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What is discovery?

Riddle Brantley LLP   |  January 19, 2015   |  

If your case is in litigation then there will be an initial period where both sides exchange information about their cases, called discovery. During this phase of your case, each side will use different statutory methods of acquiring information from the other side. This helps give both sides a better understanding of the case as a whole. It prevents surprise, can narrow issues, and often leads to out-of-court settlements since both sides will now have a better picture of how the jury may view the case. Cases can evolve, for better or worse, during this phase of litigation.

There are six discovery devices which can be used. (1) oral depositions, (2) written depositions, (3) interrogatories to parties, (4) production of documents and things, (5) physical or mental examinations; and (6) Admissions. Some of these are more commonly used than others, and it is important to note that each party bears his own costs of discovery.