United States District Court, N.D. Illinois
ORDER TRANSFERRING SUBPOENA-RELATED MOTION TO COMPEL
(DOCKET NOS. 2, 6)
J. KOPPE UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
before the Court are Plaintiff Stericycle's Emergency
Motion to Compel Defendant Patriot Environmental Services,
Inc. to Produce Certain Documents and Computer Devices in
Response to a Nonparty Subpoena Issued in a Related
Proceeding in the Northern District of Illinois
(“Motion to Compel”), and Plaintiff's
Emergency Motion to Transfer its Motion to Compel to the
Northern District of Illinois (“Motion to
Transfer”). Docket Nos. 2, 6. Defendant Patriot
Environmental Services (“Patriot”) filed a
response in opposition to both motions and Plaintiff
(“Stericycle”) filed a reply. Docket Nos. 23, 32.
For the reasons stated below, the Court hereby GRANTS
Stericycle's Motion to Transfer. Accordingly, the Court
ORDERS that Stericycle's Motion to Compel be transferred
to the Northern District of Illinois.
2016, Stericycle served a subpoena on Patriot pursuant to
Rule 45. See, e.g., Docket No. 2, Exhibit
1. Stericycle served the subpoena in connection with a
lawsuit that Stericycle had filed in the Northern District of
Illinois. See, e.g., Docket No 2 at 5. The subpoena
requires that Patriot comply with it in the Northern District
of Illinois. Docket No. 2, Exhibit 1. Patriot is not a
defendant in the Illinois case, but rather possesses
documents, tangible items, and information that Stericycle
initially attempted to obtain from the defendants in that
case. Docket No. 2 at 10-11. Stericycle alleges that Patriot
refused to comply with the subpoena. Id. at 11-12.
As a result, Stericycle filed a motion to compel
Patriot's compliance with the subpoena in the Central
District of California, where Patriot is headquartered.
Id. at 12. Stericycle later voluntarily suspended
its efforts to seek enforcement of the subpoena in the
Central District of California. Id. at 14.
Stericycle then filed the Motion to Compel and Motion to
Transfer at issue here. See Docket No. 2 at 11-14.
MAGISTRATE JUDGE AUTHORITY
pending motions have been referred to the undersigned
magistrate judge. Before turning to the merits of the pending
motions, the Court evaluates its authority to decide them.
The authority of the undersigned magistrate judge is derived
from 28 U.S.C. § 636, which generally provides
magistrate judges with the authority to “hear and
determine” non-dispositive matters. See 28
U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(A); see also S.E.C. v. CMKM
Diamonds, Inc., 729 F.3d 1248, 1259 (9th Cir. 2013). By
contrast, dispositive matters are sometimes referred to
magistrate judges, but in those circumstances a magistrate
judge submits a recommendation to the assigned district judge
that is subject to the district judge's de novo
review. See 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B); see
also CMKM Diamonds, 729 F.3d at 1259-60.
pending dispute falls within the gambit of non-dispositive
matters properly determined by a magistrate judge. Magistrate
judges are frequently tasked with resolving discovery
disputes. See, e.g., Columbia Pictures, Inc. v.
Bunnell, 245 F.R.D. 443, 448 (C.D. Cal. 2007). More
particularly, ruling on a request to transfer
subpoena-related motions to another court is within the
provision of a magistrate judge's authority under Section
636(b)(1)(A). See Chem-Aqua, Inc. v. Nalco Co., 2014
WL 2645999, *1 (N.D. Tex. June 13, 2014); see also Pavao
v. Unifund CCR Partners, 934 F.Supp.2d 1238, 1241 n.1
(S.D. Cal. 2013) (collecting cases for transfers under 28
U.S.C. § 1404(a)). That subpoena-related motions come
before the court in the context of a miscellaneous action
based entirely on the disputed subpoenas does not alter that
conclusion, even though the magistrate judge's resolution
of the motions may be dispositive of the miscellaneous
action. Feist v. RCN Corp., 2012 WL 4835038, *1
(N.D. Cal. Oct. 4, 2012). Accordingly, the undersigned has
the authority to resolve the subpoena-related dispute
currently pending before the Court.
Motion to Compel describes its discovery dispute with Patriot
at length and argues that the Court should compel Patriot to
comply with the subpoena. See generally Docket No.
2. The Motion to Compel fails to address this Court's
jurisdiction to resolve a motion related to a subpoena that
requires compliance in Illinois. See generally
Docket No. 2. Stericycle's subsequent Motion to
Transfer slightly changes course, arguing that this Court
should transfer its Motion to Compel to the Northern District
of Illinois. See, e.g., Docket No. 2 at 6.
responds that this Court is not the court where compliance
with the subpoena is required, as the subpoena requires
compliance in the Northern District of Illinois. Docket No.
23 at 14. Therefore, Patriot argues, this Court does not have
jurisdiction under Rule 45(d) to enforce Plaintiff's
Motion to Compel. Id. Patriot presents no argument
as to why this Court should not transfer
Stericycle's Motion to Compel to the Northern District of
Illinois. See generally Docket No. 23. Indeed,
Patriot appears to assert that the Northern District of
Illinois is the correct forum in which to resolve the Motion
to Compel. See Id. at 14-16.
replies that this Court should grant its Motion to Transfer.
Docket No. 32 at 5. Specifically, Stericycle argues that the
Northern District of Illinois will have the jurisdiction to
modify the subpoena as necessary, and to enforce it.
essence, both parties agree that the Northern District of
Illinois is the appropriate forum in which to resolve
Stericycle's Motion to Compel. Additionally, this Court
does not have jurisdiction to resolve Stericycle's Motion
to Compel because the District of Nevada is not “the
court for the district where compliance is required.”
See Rule 45(d); see also Agincourt Gaming, LLC
v. Zynga, Inc., 2014 WL 4079555, at *4-5 (D. Nev. Aug.
15, 2014) (finding no jurisdiction under Rule 45 to resolve
subpoena-related motions and relying on 28 U.S.C. § 1631
to transfer those motions to the court in the district where
compliance was required).
the Court GRANTS Stericycle's Motion to Transfer. Docket
No. 6. The Court ORDERS that Stericycle's Motion to
Compel, Docket No. 2, be transferred to the Northern District
of Illinois. The Court further ...