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Richards v. Hertz – Case Brief Summary (New York)

In Richards v. Hertz, 100 AD3d 728, 953 N.Y.S.2d 654 [2nd Dept. 2012], a personal injury action, defendants served a demand for authorizations for access to "all status reports, e-mails, photographs and videos posted on the injured plaintiff's Facebook profiles since the date of the accident" after discovering photographs conflicting with plaintiff's allegations on portions of one of the plaintiff's Facebook profiles not blocked by privacy settings (Id.).

There, the second department held that the defendants showed that at least some of the discovery sought will result in the disclosure of relevant evidence or is reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of information relating to plaintiff's claims and that it is reasonable to believe other portions of the Facebook profile may contain relevant evidence.

Further, due to the likelihood that the profile contains materials which are irrelevant, the supreme court was directed to conduct an in camera inspection to determine what was relevant, if anything. (Id.)