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In re Alcatel USA, Inc – Case Brief Summary (Texas)

In In re Alcatel USA, Inc., 11 S.W.3d 173, 175 (Tex. 2000), the Texas Supreme Court recognized that these guidelines could be read as requiring trial courts to undertake two hearings and issue two orders. Id.

"We recognize that these guidelines could be read as requiring trial courts to undertake two hearings and issue two orders: First, a hearing on whether to grant a protective order and, if one is granted, then a second hearing, after less intrusive methods of discovery have been explored, to determine whether the protective order should be dissolved." Id.

Therefore, a "mechanical" application of the Crown Central guidelines is not necessary when the parties have already undertaken extensive discovery and the court has sufficient information to consider both prongs of the guidelines. Id.

The Crown Central Petroleum Corp. v. Garcia, 904 S.W.2d 125 (Tex. 1995) guidelines apply "when a party seeks to depose a corporate president or other high level corporate official and that official (or corporation) files a motion for protective order to prohibit the deposition accompanied by the official's affidavit denying any knowledge of facts . . . ." Id.

A party initiates the Crown Central guidelines by moving for protection and filing the corporate official's affidavit denying any knowledge of relevant facts.