Discovery: What is the Scope?

In litigation, after the pleadings are filed, the parties begin “Discovery”, the exchange and gathering of information in preparation for settlement or trial.

The scope of discovery is very broad.  The scope includes anything relevant to the subject matter, admissible or reasonably likely to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence, which is not privileged.

The words “anything” and “reasonably likely to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence” let you know that in discovery, going on a “fishing expedition” is entirely acceptable (assuming no privilege applies).  Almost anything can be shown to be “reasonably likely to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.”

The take away from this discussion on the scope of discovery is that almost everything is within the scope.  The main boundary will be privilege.  In other words, an objection to discovery on the grounds that the items or information being requested are not relevant is likely to fail.

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