Orloff v. Shulman
Del. Ch., C.A. No. 852, February 2, 2005 (Lamb, V.C.)
In this case the court addressed the issue of a Motion to Stay Discovery Pending the Resolution of a Motion to Dismiss. The court noted that there is no absolute right to a stay of discovery, even where a case dispositive motion has been filed. Rather, the grant of such a request is within the discretion of the trial court. The moving party bears the burden of persuasion. The court relied on a three-part test that was described in a decision by former Chancellor Allen that might justify the denial of the stay of discovery, despite a pending Motion to Dismiss:
1)Where the motion does not offer a reasonable expectation of avoiding further litigation;
2)Where the plaintiff has requested interim relief;
3)Where the plaintiff will be prejudiced because information may be unavailable later.
As applied to the facts before it, the court reasoned that the Motion to Stay Discovery should be granted in light of the extensive discovery requests and the substantial burden that would be imposed on the defendant.