39 Fla. L. Weekly D1000c
Creditors’ rights — Discovery in aid of execution — Trial
court did not abuse discretion in allowing subpoenas for depositions duces tecum
directed to non-parties where formal proceedings supplementary had not
2700 NORTH OCEAN, LLC, et al., Appellants, vs. OPHIR STERNBERG and ALLISON
GREENFIELD, Appellees. 3rd District. Case No. 3D13-2892. L.T. Case No. 11-38719.
Opinion filed May 14, 2014. An appeal from the Circuit Court for Miami-Dade
County, Victoria Sigler, Judge. Counsel: Kula & Samson, LLP, and Elliot B.
Kula, Daniel M. Samson, and W. Aaron Daniel; Akerman LLP, and Jason S. Oletsky
and Ashley Sawyer Smith (Fort Lauderdale), for appellants. Michael L. Feinstein,
P.A., and Michael L. Feinstein (Fort Lauderdale), for appellees.
(Before SUAREZ, LAGOA, and LOGUE, JJ.)
judgment creditors on a recorded judgment originally obtained in New York.
Appellants, who are third-party witnesses in the underlying proceedings, were
served with subpoenas for depositions duces tecum seeking broad categories of
documents in aid of execution. Appellants seek review of a trial court order
that denied their motions to shield themselves from all or part of the
discovery. In their reply brief, Appellants explained: “this appeal does not
seek review of a scope-of discovery ruling, but rather it seeks review of the
trial court’s ability in the first instance to enter a discovery order directed
to a non-party in a post-judgment pursuit of in-aid-of-execution
discovery — and where formal proceedings supplementary had yet to be
in aid of execution from any person in the manner provided in the Rules
of Civil Procedure.” Albert v. Hartford Nat. Bank & Trust Co., 423
So. 2d 1027, 1028 (Fla. 4th DCA 1982) (emphasis added); see also
Fla. R. Civ. P. 1.560(a). We note that the parties have already entered into a
confidentiality agreement and that “[t]rial courts have broad discretion in
controlling discovery and in issuing protective orders.” Katzman v. Rediron
Fabrication, Inc., 76 So. 3d 1060, 1065 (Fla. 4th DCA 2011). Given the
evidence presented, the trial judge could find that there was a sufficient
relationship between Appellants and the judgment debtor to justify the records
requested. It was therefore within the discretion of the trial judge to allow
the discovery to go forward.
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