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Florida Rules of Civil Procedure

Florida Rules of Civil Procedure

1.280 General Provisions Governing Discovery

(a) Discovery Methods. Parties may obtain discovery by one or more of the following methods: depositions upon oral examination or written questions; written interrogatories; production of documents or things or permission to enter upon land or other property for inspection and other purposes; physical and mental examinations; and requests for admission. Unless the court orders otherwise and under subdivision (c) of this rule, the frequency of use of these methods is not limited, except as provided in rules 1.200, 1.340, and 1.370.

(b) Scope of Discovery. Unless otherwise limited by order of the court in accordance with these rules, the scope of discovery is as follows:

(1) In General. Parties may obtain discovery regarding any matter, not privileged, that is relevant to the subject matter of the pending action, whether it relates to the claim or defense of the party seeking discovery or the claim or defense of any other party, including the existence, description, nature, custody, condition, and location of any books, documents, or other tangible things and the identity and location of persons having knowledge of any discoverable matter. It is not ground for objection that the information sought will be inadmissible at the trial if the information sought appears reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.

(2) Indemnity Agreements. A party may obtain discovery of the existence and contents of any agreement under which any person may be liable to satisfy part or all of a judgment that may be entered in the action or to indemnify or to reimburse a party for payments made to satisfy the judgment. Information concerning the agreement is not admissible in evidence at trial by reason of disclosure.

(3) Trial Preparation: Materials. Subject to the provisions of subdivision (b)(4) of this rule, a party may obtain discovery of documents and tangible things otherwise discoverable under subdivision (b)(1) of this rule and prepared in anticipation of litigation or for trial by or for another party or by or for that party's representative, including that party's attorney, consultant, surety, indemnitor, insurer, or agent, only upon a showing that the party seeking discovery has need of the materials in the preparation of the case and is unable without undue hardship to obtain the substantial equivalent of the materials by other means. In ordering discovery of the materials when the required showing has been made, the court shall protect against disclosure of the mental impressions, conclusions, opinions, or legal theories of an attorney or other representative of a party concerning the litigation. Without the required showing a party may obtain a copy of a statement concerning the action or its subject matter previously made by that party. Upon request without the required showing a person not a party may obtain a copy of a statement concerning the action or its subject matter previously made by that person. If the request is refused, the person may move for an order to obtain a copy. The provisions of rule 1.380(a)(4) apply to the award of expenses incurred as a result of making the motion. For purposes of this paragraph, a statement previously made is a written statement signed or otherwise adopted or approved by the person making it, or a stenographic, mechanical, electrical, or other recording or transcription of it that is a substantially verbatim recital of an oral statement by the person making it and contemporaneously recorded.

(4) Trial Preparation: Experts. Discovery of facts known and opinions held by experts, otherwise discoverable under the provisions of subdivision (b)(1) of this rule and acquired or developed in anticipation of litigation or for trial, may be obtained only as follows:

(A) (i) By interrogatories a party may require any other party to identify each person whom the other party expects to call as an expert witness at trial and to state the subject matter on which the expert is expected to testify, and to state the substance of the facts and opinions to which the expert is expected to testify and a summary of the grounds for each opinion.

(ii) Any person disclosed by interrogatories or otherwise as a person expected to be called as an expert witness at trial may be deposed in accordance with rule 1.390 without motion or order of court.

(iii) A party may obtain the following discovery regarding any person disclosed by interrogatories or otherwise as a person expected to be called as an expert witness at trial:

1. The scope of employment in the pending case and the compensation for such service.

2. The expert's general litigation experience, including the percentage of work performed for plaintiffs and defendants.

3. The identity of other cases, within a reasonable time period, in which the expert has testified by deposition or at trial.

4. An approximation of the portion of the expert's involvement as an expert witness, which may be based on the number of hours, percentage of hours, or percentage of earned income derived from serving as an expert witness; however, the expert shall not be required to disclose his or her earnings as an expert witness or income derived from other services.

An expert may be required to produce financial and business records only under the most unusual or compelling circumstances and may not be compelled to compile or produce nonexistent documents. Upon motion, the court may order further discovery by other means, subject to such restrictions as to scope and other provisions pursuant to subdivision (b)(4)(C) of this rule concerning fees and expenses as the court may deem appropriate.

(B) A party may discover facts known or opinions held by an expert who has been retained or specially employed by another party in anticipation of litigation or preparation for trial and who is not expected to be called as a witness at trial, only as provided in rule 1.360(b) or upon a showing of excep- tional circumstances under which it is impracticable for the party seeking discovery to obtain facts or opinions on the same subject by other means.

(C) Unless manifest injustice would result, the court shall require that the party seeking discovery pay the expert a reasonable fee for time spent in responding to discovery under subdivisions (b)(4)(A) and (b)(4)(B) of this rule; and concerning discovery from an expert obtained under subdivision (b)(4)(A) of this rule the court may require, and concerning discovery obtained under subdivision (b)(4)(B) of this rule shall require, the party seeking discovery to pay the other party a fair part of the fees and expenses reasonably incurred by the latter party in obtaining facts and opinions from the expert.

(D) As used in these rules an expert shall be an expert witness as defined in rule 1.390(a).

(5) Claims of Privilege or Protection of Trial Preparation Materials. When a party withholds information otherwise discoverable under these rules by claiming that it is privileged or subject to protection as trial preparation material, the party shall make the claim expressly and shall describe the nature of the documents, communications, or things not produced or disclosed in a manner that, without revealing information itself privileged or protected, will enable other parties to assess the applicability of the privilege or protection.

(c) Protective Orders. Upon motion by a party or by the person from whom discovery is sought, and for good cause shown, the court in which the action is pending may make any order to protect a party or person from annoyance, embarrassment, oppression, or undue burden or expense that justice requires, including one or more of the following: (1) that the discovery not be had; (2) that the discovery may be had only on specified terms and conditions, including a designation of the time or place; (3) that the discovery may be had only by a method of discovery other than that selected by the party seeking discovery; (4) that certain matters not be inquired into, or that the scope of the discovery be limited to certain matters; (5) that discovery be conducted with no one present except persons designated by the court; (6) that a deposition after being sealed be opened only by order of the court; (7) that a trade secret or other confidential research, development, or commercial information not be disclosed or be disclosed only in a designated way; and (8) that the parties simultaneously file specified documents or information enclosed in sealed envelopes to be opened as directed by the court. If the motion for a protective order is denied in whole or in part, the court may, on such terms and conditions as are just, order that any party or person provide or permit discovery. The provisions of rule 1.380(a)(4) apply to the award of expenses incurred in relation to the motion.

(d) Sequence and Timing of Discovery. Except as provided in subdivision (b)(4) or unless the court upon motion for the convenience of parties and witnesses and in the interest of justice orders otherwise, methods of discovery may be used in any sequence, and the fact that a party is conducting discovery, whether by deposition or otherwise, shall not delay any other party's discovery.

(e) Supplementing of Responses. A party who has responded to a request for discovery with a response that was complete when made is under no duty to supplement the response to include information thereafter acquired.



Florida Rules of Civil Procedure
1.010 Scope and Title of Rules
1.030 Nonverification of Pleadings
1.040 One Form of Action
1.050 When Action Commenced
1.060 Transfers of Actions
1.061 Choice of Forum
1.070 Process
1.080 Service of Pleadings and Papers
1.090 Time
1.100 Pleadings and Motions
1.110 General Rules of Pleading
1.120 Pleading Special Matters
1.130 Attaching Copy of Cause of Action and Exhibits
1.140 Defenses
1.150 Sham Pleadings
1.160 Motions
1.170 Counterclaims and Crossclaims
1.180 Third-party Practice
1.190 Amended and Supplemental Pleadings
1.200 Pretrial Procedure
1.201 Complex Litigation
1.210 Parties
1.220 Class Actions
1.221 Homeowners and Condominium Assocs
1.222 Mobile Homeowners Assoc
1.230 Intervention
1.240 Interpleader
1.250 Misjoinder and Nonjoinder of Parties
1.260 Survivor, Substitution of Parties
1.270 Consolidation, Separate Trials
1.280 General Provisions Governing Discovery
1.290 Depositions Before Action or Pending Appeal
1.300 Persons Before Whom Depositions May Be Taken
1.310 Depositions Upon Oral Examination
1.320 Depositions Upon Written Questions
1.330 Use of Depositions in Court Proceedings
1.340 Interrogatories to Parties
1.350 Production of Documents and Things and Entry Upon Land for Inspection
1.351 Production of Documents and Things Without Deposition
1.360 Examination of Persons
1.370 Requests for Admission
1.380 Failure to Make Discovery, Sanctions
1.390 Depositions of Expert Witnesses
1.410 Subpoena
1.420 Dismissal of Actions
1.430 Demand for Jury Trial, Waiver
1.431 Trial Jury
1.440 Setting Action for Trial
1.442 Proposals for Settlement
1.450 Evidence
1.452 Questions by Jurors
1.455 Juror Notebooks
1.460 Continuances
1.470 Exceptions Unnecessary, Jury Instructions
1.480 Motion for a Directed Verdict
1.481 Verdicts
1.490 Magistrates
1.500 Defaults and Final Judgments Thereon
1.510 Summary Judgment
1.520 View
1.525 Motions For Costs and Attorneys Fees
1.530 Motions For New Trial and Rehearing; Amendments of Judgments
1.540 Relief from Judgment, Decrees or Orders
1.550 Executions and Final Process
1.560 Discovery in Aid of Execution
1.570 Enforcement of Final Judgments
1.580 Writ of Possession
1.590 Process in Behalf of and Against Persons Not Parties
1.600 Deposits in Court
1.610 Injunctions
1.620 Receivers
1.625 Proceedings Against Surety on Judicial Bonds
1.630 Extraordinary Remedies
1.650 Medical Malpractice Presuit Screening Rule
1.700 Rules Common to Mediation and Arbitration
1.710 Mediation Rules
1.720 Mediation Procedures
1.730 Completion of Mediation
1.750 County Court Actions
1.800 Exclusion From Arbitration
1.810 Selection and Compensation of Arbitrators
1.820 Hearing Procedures for Non-binding Arbitration
1.830 Voluntary Binding Arbitration
1.900 Forms
Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure
Florida Rules of Civil Procedure
Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure
Florida Rules of Evidence - Evidence Code
Florida Rules of Evidence - Witnesses, Records and Documents
Florida Family Law Rules of Procedure
Florida Rules of Judicial Administration
Florida Rules of Juvenile Procedure
Florida Traffic Court Rules
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