What Should Your Discovery Motions Look Like?


Discovery motions are the banes of most attorneys’ existence and they are often relegated to the newbie in the office to prepare. Young associates as well as other attorneys struggle on what needs to be in the papers and exactly how to convince the court that they should win.

With the courts’ having budgetary problems and staff shortages, it is in your best interests to make it real clear to the court (1) what has happened; (2) what you want the court to do; and (3) why you are entitled to the discovery and sanctions in a succinct fashion.

The practice guides--Weil and Brown, Civil Procedure Before Trial (TRG), CEB California Civil Discovery Practice (2010) 4th Ed and Matthew Bender Practice Guide: California Civil Discovery-- are good starting points in preparing your motion. There also are numerous seminars on law and motion practice which I encourage you to attend. To get an idea on what a judge likes and dislikes, go to the website of legal newspapers and magazines to see if there has been an interview of your particular judge.

Yet, you still may be unsure as to what the meat and potatoes of the motion should look like. After two years in the law and motion department in Alameda County Superior Court and sixteen years as a private Discovery Referee, I can tell you what I like and you can take whatever pearls and nuggets you find from there.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Katherine Gallo, Esq., Law Offices of Katherine Gallo | Attorney Advertising

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