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Defendant has not complied with judges order respond to discovery.

San Jose, CA |
Filed under: Discovery

I filed a motion to compel defendants responses to interrogatories. At the court the judge ordered defendant to respond to my interrogatories and gave a deadline. We are three weeks past the deadline and I haven't received any responses. I plan on filing another motion to compel the judges previous order for defendant to respond. at this point I don't want to send out a meet and confer to defendant. Am I required to meet and confer since
I have "not" received any responses?

Attorney Answers 3


  1. There is a legal answer to most questions and a practical answer. You are not required to meet and confer at this point. However, and many judges have different attitudes about this, you may find that you get better results with your next motion if you show that you did try to get your opponent to comply with the court order-even if it is just a quick email or letter giving him a short time period to comply and letting know what your next step is if you don't obtain compliance. Your next step would not be another motion to compel. This time, you would bring a motion for sanctions as a result of his failure to comply with a court order. Potential sanctions are terminating (the plaintiff's case is dismissed or the defendant's answer is stricken although this is unlikely at this point), issue sanctions (he can't introduce certain evidence or documents at trial), or further monetary sanctions. You should consult with an attorney to obtain more details regarding the art of obtaining sanctions.

    THIS RESPONSE IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE. IT HAS BEEN PROVIDED FOR EDUCATION AND INFORMATION ONLY. Mr. Mann is licensed to practice in the State of California. There is no implied or actual attorney-client relationship arising from this educational exchange. Moreover, the facts provided by you were not sufficient to allow Mr. Mann to advise you specifically regarding what you should or should not do. You should speak with an attorney licensed in your state, to whom you have provided all the facts before you take steps that may impact your legal rights. Mr. Mann is under no obligation to answer subsequent emails or phone calls related to this matter, or to take any action whatsoever.


  2. I agree that a full meet-and-confer is not necessary, but a reminder letter with a statement that you will file an appropriate motion for sanctions seems to be in order.

    Selecting the appropriate sanctions to seek is not easy. You would be wise to engage in some "litigation coaching" to help you strategize the motion, and perhaps help you draft it.

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