Posts Tagged ‘Civil Procedure’

The two types of motions to compel discovery

Although the rules of civil procedure don’t differentiate them, there are really two distinct types of motions to compel discovery: one addressing the untimeliness of the response and one addressing the inadequacy of the response.  Each type requires a very different strategy to prosecute. The easier type is when the other party has simply failed […]

How to help a family court litigant who failed to show up for trial

A couple times each year I will get contacted by a family law litigant who failed to show up for trial and wants to appeal the resulting one-sided order.  However since an appeal can only address the record made at the final hearing–a hearing in which only one side presented testimony and evidence–there is rarely […]

When can a family law attorney be required to pay the other party’s fees?

A few weeks ago one of my mentees inquired whether there were circumstances in which an attorney could be required to pay the other party’s attorney’s fees.  There are two circumstances I am aware of and a wise attorney avoids those circumstances. An attorney can be required to pay the other side’s fees for having […]

Seeking protective orders for private investigator information

Since adultery is often a bar to alimony in South Carolina, family law attorneys here frequently employ private investigators (PIs).  However, even when such PIs develop solid evidence of adultery, they rarely develop ironclad evidence.  If the opposing party knows what evidence the PI has developed, s/he can concoct an evasive story that denies the […]

Objecting to discovery that you sought yourself

I often see attorneys object to discovery requests when those same attorneys request the same discovery.  There are potential ethical violations and tactical problems in doing this. South Carolina Rule of Civil Procedure 11(a) reads: Every pleading, motion or other paper of a party represented by an attorney shall be signed in his individual name […]

Filing second, serving first

Before 2004, when SCRCP 3(a), was revised, it was strategically advantageous to serve a family court complaint as soon as it was filed.  This was because, up until 2004, SCRCP 3(a) stated that an action was “commenced” when a summons and complaint was served. Because of this some defendants or their attorneys, if aware that […]

Does South Carolina Rule of Civil Procedure 6(d) violate due process?

I recently defended a motion in which the timing of the submitted affidavits has me considering whether South Carolina Rule of Civil Procedure 6(d) violates due process. An opposing attorney filed a motion for sanctions under Rule 37(b)(2), SCRCP, when my clients failed to answer discovery within the deadline set under a prior court order.  As […]

What makes a good request for admission?

Other than requests for admissions on the authenticity of documents–which can be issued in unlimited numbers–South Carolina Rule of Civil Procedure 36(c) limits a party to twenty requests for admissions absent “good cause shown.”  How to employ those twenty requests is an important strategic concern. There’s really only two ways one can utilize a request […]