Discovery – Request for Production of documents (aka RPD)

In addition to the interrogatories (Special, Form and Supplemental), another inexpensive discovery device is the Demand (or Request) for Production of Documents which is sometimes called the Demand (Request) for Inspection of Documents.

This device can also be used for inspection of real property such as the location of an accident, site of a slip and fall or to inspect a structure for a defect or dangerous condition.  It can also be used to request the testing or sampling of things.  The most common use, however, is to obtain documents which support the other party’s claim or which they may have in their possession and control.

Typically, the time to respond to a Demand for Inspection is 30 days plus 5 additional days if served via mail.

The requests for inspection and copying of documents are made pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure section 2031.010 et. seq. (and following).  This device is available to obtain documents and tangible things from both a party and a non-party.

If you seek documents and/or tangible things from a non-party, you must use a Business Records Subpoena.

Another important issue that comes up with a document production request is obtaining electronic data.  The discovery of ESI (Electronically-stored information) is called E-Discovery and is an important and expanding area for lawyers and paralegals.

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