MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
JOSEPH F. BATAILLON, District Judge.
This matter is before the court on the defendant's motion to dismiss three plaintiffs for failure to provide responses to Tyson's First Set of Interrogatories or Requests for Production, Filing No.
In support of its motion, Tyson has shown that plaintiffs Dean Renfeld and Rosaura Azpeitia have failed to respond to written discovery propounded by Tyson, and that plaintiff Raymond L. Plafcan has not produced documents (paystubs) that he admits he has in his possession. Filing No.
The court is authorized to order dismissal as a sanction for failure to prosecute a claim or to comply with its orders. Fed. R. Civ. P. 41(b); Rodgers v. Curators of the Univ. of Mo., 135 F.3d 1216, 1219 (8th Cir. 1998). In ordering such a sanction, the court must balance the degree of egregious conduct and the adverse impact of such conduct on both the opposing party and the administration of justice. See id. The sanction imposed by the court must be proportionate to the litigant's transgression. Id. (stating that dismissal with prejudice is an extreme sanction and should be used only in cases of willful disobedience of a court order or persistent failure to prosecute a complaint).
The court is further authorized under Fed. R. Civ. P. 37(b) to enter dismissal as a sanction in the case of failure to comply with discovery orders. See Keefer v. Provident Life and Acc. Ins. Co., 238 F.3d 937, 940 (8th Cir. 2000). Generally, fairness requires a court to consider whether a lesser sanction is available or appropriate before imposing the sanction of dismissal under Rule 37. Id. at 941. When the facts show willfulness and bad faith, however, the court need not investigate the propriety of a lesser sanction. Everyday Learning Corp. v. Larson, 242 F.3d 815, 817-18 (8th Cir. 2001). Finally, when a litigant's conduct abuses the judicial process, the remedy of dismissal is within the inherent powers of the court. Id. at 818.
The court finds that plaintiffs' conduct does not warrant the extreme sanction of dismissal. The plaintiffs were earlier ordered to respond to discovery requests with respect to 13 plaintiffs. The court's review of the record shows that plaintiffs substantially complied with that order, and any remaining failures to respond do not appear to be in bad faith. The defendant has not shown it will be prejudiced by these plaintiffs' failure to respond to the discovery. Accordingly,
IT IS ORDERED that the defendant's motion to dismiss the claims of plaintiffs Dean Renfeld, Rosaura Azpeitia, and Raymond L. Plafcan (Filing No.