How can I save legal expenses in discovery?

Discovery is a standard—and almost inevitable part of a domestic relations case.  Discovery Requests, as they are collectively known, often come in the forms of Interrogatories; Requests for Documents, also known as Requests for Production; and Requests for Admissions.  Discovery is automatically authorized in cases arising out of the Circuit Court, but the Court must grant permission for parties to conduct discovery in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Courts.

Clients can assist their counsel to streamline and save money during the discovery process.  Once domestic relations litigation begins, it is helpful for parties to begin collecting documents that may be relevant to their case, even if they have not been formally served with discovery yet.  A client may choose to ask their lawyer what types of documents or details they likely will need in responding to discovery so they can start collecting such information.

A party can also save money by thoroughly and carefully drafting his or answers to Discovery.  It will prove more costly if the client’s attorney is required to: significantly edit the responsive pleadings, repeatedly ask the client to supplement his or her answers, communicate with opposing counsel about discovery deficiencies; or defend against a Motion to Compel as outlined above.  Further, parties who are not completely thorough in their initial discovery responses will be required to supplement, which means that additional legal costs will be incurred.

Author: Cassandra Sheehan