Understanding a foreign deposition subpoena

It is not unusual for an individual to be served a subpoena demanding that they produce documentary evidence that is to be used in legal proceedings outside the state in which they reside. In many cases the subpoena seems to have nothing to do at all with the individual that has been served. Regardless of what documentation the subpoena seeks there is one thing in common and that is a demand that it be complied with, post-haste otherwise there may be unpleasant consequences.

Is it necessary to comply?

As the subpoena has been issued by a foreign (out of state) court the question arises,” is it necessary to comply?” The individual that has been served has nothing to do with the out of state action; he or she has not been named as a party in a lawsuit and has no corporate exposure in the state where the subpoena was issued.

Prior to October 1, 2011 the answer to this question was “no.” After this date the answer is yes but with the caveat that the foreign deposition subpoena must comply with the Nevada Uniform Interstate Deposition and Discovery Act.

What is the Uniform Interstate Deposition and Discovery Act?

The objective was quite simple, create an act which allowed subpoenas from out of state to be issued easily and efficiently, one which minimizes the need for judicial oversight and intervention and is fair and cost-effective for both litigants and deponents.

After considerable time and effort was expended a straight forward act that gave lawyers dealing with an out of state lawsuit to serve subpoenas to non-parties to the action that are located in states that adopted the act. The Uniform Interstate Depositions and Discovery Act was passed in Nevada and became effective in October 2011.


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