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Turner v. Alstate Insurance Co.

United States District Court, M.D. Alabama, Northern Division

May 24, 2017

GARNET TURNER, Individually and on behalf of all others Similarly situated,, Plaintiffs
v.
ALSTATE INSURANCE CO., Defendant JOHN E. KLASS, Individually and on behalf of all others Similarly situated,, Plaintiffs
v.
ALSTATE INSURANCE CO., Defendant

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          CHARLES S. COODY, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE

         In these consolidated ERISA[1] cases, former employees of Allstate contend that Allstate failed to provide them with “paid up” life insurance policies as promised as part of their retirement plan. On October 7 2016, the plaintiffs deposed Jim Devries, Allstate's former Executive Vice President of Operations. Now, in a motion to compel, the plaintiffs want to redepose DeVries. (Pl. Mot. to Compel, Doc. # 153) During the original deposition, the following colloquy took place.

Q To your knowledge, in making the decision to terminate the retiree life Insurance benefits to Allstate employees, did you consider what commitments Allstate had made to its home office employees when it issued a special retirement opportunity to them in the mid ‘90's?
A Do I answer about about the legal review?
MR. BLOCKER: you can't--you can't provide any testimony about any conversation you had with the lawyers.
BY MR. PEARL:
Q Do you understand the question?
A Yes.
Q I'm not asking you to tell me what you may have learned from a lawyer Allstate or outside lawyer. My question is what you considered and if you considered what commitments Allstate made to its home office employees.
MR. BLOCKER: Well again, I know you think those are different questions, but -
MR. PEARL: They are.
MR. BLOCKER: Like I said, I know you think those are different questions. But if his answer requires him to divulge communications he had with Counsel, then I'm instructing him not to answer with respect to those communications.
BY MR. PEARL:
Q And you understand I'm not asking you to divulge any communications with counsel. And I'm certainly not asking to you devulge any communications ...

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