"Discovery" is the procedure by which parties exchange information about their respective cases. It embraces several different methodologies, including depositions, interrogatories, document requests, and requests for admissions (although in some jurisdictions, requests for admissions are not considered an actual part of discovery). Interrogatories are written questions propounded by one side to the other side, while requests for admissions are written requests that the other party admit certain states of events.
Interrogatories and document requests will typically be used prior to requests for admissions.
Please note that I am a New York attorney and cannot advise you as to the application of California state law. For that reason, you should consult with a local attorney.
Good luck to you.
You may be right about the person not existing. However, you are in very real danger, if you represent yourself, that they can establish the credit card debt through YOU. In fact, most lawyers who represent people being sued on credit card debts discourage their clients from having interaction with opposing side for that reason.
I know that you did not come to AVVO to hear this but, unfortunately, this is exactly the type of case for which you should seek an attorney and you can do real damage to yourself if you don't have one. If you either search here or online for credit card defense lawyer, I know there are great lawyers in San Diego.
Good luck and please be careful!
Legal Disclaimer: You should remember that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on. This is because each state has different laws and each situation is fact specific. And, in fact, I don't practice in San Diego. That is why a lawyer can't evaluate a legal problem without a consultation and a chance to review every fact and document at issue.
Also, this answer does not create an attorney-client relationship between us.
As stated above, "discovery" includes depositions, interrogatories, document requests, and, under certain state rules of civil procedure, requests for admission. Questions are asked by one party and answered by another through interrogatories. Documents and things are requested and produced pursuant to document requests. Requests for admission simply require that the other party admit or deny a specific fact.
Please note that I am an attorney licensed in Illinois and Wisconsin. You should consult with an attorney familiar with the rules of the local court in which your matter is pending.
Disclaimer: This answer does not establish an attorney-client relationship and does not constitute legal advice. It is for general informational purposes only.