Discovery – Quiz (Key)

keyHere are the answers to yesterday’s quiz on discovery:

1.  All of the ones on the form may be used, but it is best to use only the ones that are relevant to the subject matter of the lawsuit.

2.  35

3. 30 days plus 5 days for mailing if the interrogatories were served by mail.

4.  30 days plus 5 days for mailing if the interrogatories were served by mail.

5.  Yes, but only if accompanied by a properly served subpoena.

Published in: on February 6, 2014 at 8:31 am  Leave a Comment  
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Discovery – Quiz

quizCheck your basic understanding of California’s discovery rules.  Take the following quiz.

1.  How many Form Interrogatories may you request on the form approved by the California Judicial Council?

2.  How many Special Interrogatories may you request without attaching a declaration?

3.  How long does a party have to respond to interrogatories?

4.  How long does a party have to respond to a  Demand for Production of Documents?

5.  Can a Deposition be taken of a non-party?

See upcoming post for answers to the Discovery Quiz.

Published in: on February 5, 2014 at 8:27 am  Leave a Comment  
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Drafting Interrogatories

The following is a blog post from the CEB (Continuing Education of the Bar) on the subject of how to draft interrogatories:

7 Rules for Drafting Interrogatories


It is always good to be reminded of the basics.

Published in: on October 14, 2013 at 8:47 am  Leave a Comment  
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What’s a Citator?

A Citator can be used by the legal researcher for several things:

  1. To validate a case – validating a case means verifying that the case is still good law.  A researcher can check a citator to see if a case has been overturned or received negative comment or criticism by a later court.  If a later court in the same jurisdiction overturned the case, the case is no longer good law, and a legal arguments can not be based on that case.  It is not precedent.
  2. To locate relevant primary authority – when you look up a case in a citator, it will cite other cases which have discussed the same issue as the case you already have located.  This is a good way to find cases on point.
  3. To locate secondary authority – often when researching in an area with which the researcher is unfamiliar, the research may want to consult secondary sources to become more familiar with the area of law.  The citator can help the researcher locate such secondary sources.

The citator will provide parallel citations, case history, cases that mention or cite the case and references to West’s headnote system.

More on Health Care Directives

The following is a CEB article that discusses other aspects of the Advanced Health Care Directive:

Being Prepared Is Ageless: Everyone Should Have an Advanced Health Care Directive

Health Care Directives

The following is a good article highlighting the importance of Advanced Health Care Directives especially in light of Alzheimer’s onset:

Make Alzheimer’s End-of-Life Healthcare Decisions Long Before You Need Them

Computers at Work

Here’s a recent article of the CEB on the issue of your employer’s computers:

Don’t Mess with Your Employer’s Computer

Discovery – Depositions (The Paralegal’s Part)

Depositions, as we discussed in the last post, can be taken of parties or non-parties.  Any of the parties may attend the deposition of any witness whether or not they asked for the deposition.  Typically, the one who noticed the deposition pays for it and has first “shot” at the witness although all the lawyers and parties in pro per have a chance to ask questions since a witness many only be deposed once under most circumstances.

The paralegal may be involved in all or some of these aspects of the preparation for the deposition:

  • Send notices
  • Serve Subpoenas on non-party witness
  • Prepare Notice to Produce Documents
  • Arrange location
  • Schedule Court Reporter
  • Prepare an outline of topics/questions for the deposition
  • Copy and organize exhibits to be referred to
  • Prepare client for Deposition
  • Take notes at the deposition
  • Summarize Deposition Transcript

One thing the paralegal in California cannot ethically do is take the deposition.

Discovery – Depositions (Part 2)

As discussed in our first post on Depositions, the statutes governing the taking of depositions in California are found in the California Code of Civil Procedure.

Some of the basics of are:

  • Depositions can be taken of both parties and non-parties.
  • A notice of deposition must be served on a party at least 10 days prior to the date the party is to appear, and if the party is required to bring documents, the notice must be at least 20 days.  Five days are added if the notices are mailed.
  •  With a non-party, the witness has to be served with a subpoena to appear in addition to the notice of deposition.  A non-party witness is also entitled to a witness fee and mileage.
  • The location of the deposition must be within 75 miles of the deponent’s residence or within the county where the action is filed and within 150 miles of the deponent’s residence.
  • The deposition is typically recorded by a court reporter.  It is also possible to have video-taping, but the notice of deposition must include that information.

Managing emails . . . keeping your head above water

The following article from The LEGACO Express for Paralegals has some good ideas about managing email which can be an overwhelming job, especially on Monday:

Buried Alive?  Tips for Mastering Email Overload

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