Discovery in Foreign Jurisdictions

United States


Discovery in foreign jurisdictions has traditionally been problematic, and costly, for all parties involved in litigation, most especially for nonparty witnesses residing in another state. In 2007, the Uniform Law Commission formally addressed this issue with the promulgation the Uniform Interstate Depositions and Discovery Act. Under this Act, known as UIDDA, litigants from the trial state can now arrange for depositions or production of discovery related materials by working directly with court clerk in the discovery state by issuing a foreign subpoena. Upon receipt, the clerk then issues a subpoena for service upon either the person or entity involved in the discovery process. A key feature of the Act is that the subpoena issued by the clerk incorporates the same information as the original foreign subpoena issued by the trial state. The Act eliminates previous needs for heavy judicial oversight including commissions, local counsel, and filings for miscellaneous discovery action.


It is also important to note that the trials state’s discovery request must comply with the discovery rules of the state to which the foreign subpoena will be issued. This also applies to the discovery states rules surrounding all motions pertaining to subpoenas including motions to quash, enforce or modify a subpoena. To learn more about local discovery rules, visit



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