Desso v. Vandenberg Chase & Associates LLC
A court can issue a fine to punish a litigant who does not respond to discovery or attend a court hearing and is in contempt of court. Previously, a court entered a default judgment against the defendant, Vandenberg Chase & Associates LLC, in the amount of $17,000, plus $3,500 in attorneys' fees and costs. In June 2012, the plaintiff filed a motion to compel postjudgment discovery. The District Court granted the plaintiff's motion and ordered Vandenberg to respond, on or before Aug. 31, 2012. Absent a response from Vandenberg, the plaintiff filed a motion for an order to show cause. The court granted the motion and scheduled a hearing. The plaintiff's attorney claimed that he left numerous messages for an officer of Vandenberg, Chris Norman. The court found Vandenberg is in civil contempt, and it ordered Vandenberg to pay a fine of $1,000 per day, until it responds to the plaintiff's postdiscovery requests. The court awarded the plaintiff an additional $2,500 in attorneys' fees and $286 in costs.