Missouri Appellate Court Holds Timing Requirements for Requests for Admissions are Not Mere Suggestions

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Requests for admissions propounded pursuant to Missouri Rule of Civil Procedure 59.01 are likely to get any litigant’s attention, if only due to the potential consequences for failing to timely respond. The rule says such failure shall result in each matter being admitted. To under- score the point, the rule requires the proponent to include a warning in capital, boldface type that a failure to timely respond “shall result in each matter being admitted by you and not subject to further dispute.” Missouri courts have consistently required strict compliance with Rule 59.01 when responding to requests for admissions, but what about when propounding them?

In the recent Lane House opinion, the Eastern District addressed, in a matter of first impression, the effect of requests for admissions where the propounding party did not comply strictly with Rule 59.01. Essentially, the court found that, since the rule requires strict compliance when responding to requests for admissions, fairness dictates the rule requires strict compliance when a party issues the requests.

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