Whether you’re the plaintiff or defendant in a New York business lawsuit, you will need evidence to support your arguments. Although you may already have some of that evidence, you likely don’t have all of it.
This is where discovery comes in. It is the formal process by which parties to a lawsuit request and exchange relevant evidence. Discovery is an essential part of making your claim for damages or defending against a plaintiff’s lawsuit.
Discovery is governed by a lengthy set of civil procedure rules. This complex stage of litigation often requires involvement by the courts. For these reasons, you will need the assistance of an experienced New York business law attorney. Count on Rosenbaum & Taylor.
What You Need to Know About Discovery
Litigants – both plaintiffs and defendants – rarely begin their lawsuits having all the evidence needed to win. But it is not the role of judges and court clerks to obtain the evidence for you. Instead, you and your New York business attorney will need to acquire the proof to support your claims.
Discovery is the formal process by which the plaintiff and defendant exchange evidence relevant to underlying allegations in a lawsuit.
In a business lawsuit, discovery is used to get the evidence necessary to:
- Support and develop your arguments and allegations
- Refute the opposing party’s position in the case, including its defenses and counterclaims
- Clarify which issues are in dispute between the parties (and which aren’t)
- Determine what the lawsuit is worth in damages
- Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the parties’ positions in the case
- Advance productive settlement negotiations
Both plaintiffs and defendants can send discovery requests to each other. As a general rule, however, the parties must use discovery to seek relevant information. A party can object if it believes a request is not designed to seek information that is relevant to the parties’ claims.
There are several bases upon which a party may object to a discovery request, such as relevance. If the other party persists in the request, a judge may need to weigh in. The judge may decide to agree with the objection or to overrule it. Another possibility is requiring the objecting party to respond, but with limitations. A New York business law attorney can assist with these matters.
Types of Discovery in a New York Business Lawsuit
These are a few of the discovery methods parties may use in a business lawsuit.
An interrogatory is a written request for information. Responses could lead to additional evidence or confirm the factual basis of certain allegations. Questions are to be answered under oath by the responding party.
Requests for Production of Documents
Plaintiffs and defendants may request relevant documents from each other. For instance, in a business lawsuit, a party may ask for internal accounting records from another party.
Requests for Admission
With these, one party presents a statement to another and asks the party to admit or deny it. The objective of this method is primarily to narrow the scope of the lawsuit by determining what the parties already agree on. These requests therefore can save time and money for handling issues that remain in dispute.
During a deposition, a witness gives oral testimony under oath. He or she may be cross-examined as well. Deposition testimony, usually in video or written format, can later be admitted into court as evidence.
Let Our New York Business Law Attorneys Help With Your Case
Rosenbaum & Taylor understands the various discovery rules involved with New York business lawsuits. We also know what’s at stake in your case. Our team is prepared to use discovery to your advantage and assist you with answering discovery requests. Call us today to learn more.