Amica Mutual Insurance Co. v. Schettler – Case Brief Summary (Utah)

In Amica Mutual Insurance Co. v. Schettler, 768 P.2d 950, 962 (Utah Ct. App. 1989) the court of appeals held that the district court's failure to make a specific finding of willfulness, bad faith, or fault "is not grounds for reversal if 'a full understanding of the issues on appeal can nevertheless be determined by the appellate court.'"

In Schettler, the court of appeals upheld the district court's dismissal of a case despite the absence of a finding of willfulness where the record "clearly demonstrated a pattern of aggravated misconduct in the form of willful and deliberate disobedience of discovery orders, fabricated testimony, and attempted witness tampering."

In Schettler, the district court explained that the record "clearly demonstrates a pattern of aggravated misconduct in the form of willful and deliberate disobedience of discovery orders, fabricated testimony, and witness tampering."

Moreover, the opposing party had filed a motion for sanctions for client and attorney misconduct and a motion to compel, and the court had entered an order--to which Schettler did not respond--requesting a more thorough response to the motions.

In Schamanek, the sanctioned party refused to respond to requests for admission, refused to produce documents, refused to answer deposition questions, and continued this pattern of refusal after the court entered an order compelling discovery.