Olivarez v. GEO Group, Inc., et al, No. 16-50191 (5th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Appellants-attorneys Shawn Fitzpatrick and Timothy Flocos were sanctioned by the district court for certifying that their clients’ initial disclosures under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 26(a)(1) were complete and correct even though the disclosures failed to mention evidence that Appellants later used during a deposition. Appellants appealed, asking the Fifth Circuit to reverse the district court’s decision and remit to them the monetary sanctions collected by the district court. Appellants argued that they used two recordings solely to impeach a witness' credibility; therefore, they were not required to disclose the recordings under Rule 26(a)(1). Appellants also argued that the district court failed to properly consider whether their decision to withhold the evidence at issue from the initial disclosures was substantially justified. Finding no reversible error in the district court's decision to sanction appellants, the Fifth Circuit affirmed.