Motion for Protective Order in Virginia Circuit Court – At A Glance

Use this At A Glance Guide to learn the Virginia Supreme Court Rules related to Motion for Protective Order in Virginia Circuit Courts. For more detailed information, please see the SmartRules Motion for Protective Order Guide for the court where your action is pending.

The moving party must show that an order is reasonably necessary to protect the movant from annoyance, embarrassment, oppression or undue burden or expense. V.S.C.R. 4:1(c).

The moving party must show good cause why a protective order is necessary. V.S.C.R. 4:1(c).

A party need not provide discovery of electronically stored information from sources that the party identifies as not reasonably accessible because of undue burden or cost. On motion to compel discovery or for a protective order, the party from whom discovery is sought must show that the information is not reasonably accessible because of undue burden or cost. If that showing is made, the court may nonetheless order discovery from such sources if the requesting party shows good cause, considering the limitations of Rule 4:1(b)(1). The court may specify conditions for the discovery, including allocation of the reasonable costs thereof. V.S.C.R. 4:1(b)(7)(eff 1/1/09).

A motion for protective order must be accompanied by a certification that the movant has in good faith conferred or attempted to confer with other affected parties in an effort to resolve the dispute without court action. V.S.C.R. 4:1(c); V.S.C.R. 4:1(b)(8)(eff 1/1/09).

A motion for protective order must be brought in the court where the action is pending, or, on matters relating to a deposition, the court in the city or county where the deposition is to be taken. V.S.C.R. 4:1(c).

Relief available on a motion for protective order includes orders stating that:

The discovery not be had;

The discovery be had, but only upon certain conditions, which may include specifications as to time or place;

The discovery be had only by a different method of discovery than the one sought;

The scope of the discovery is limited to certain matters or that certain areas may not be inquired into;

No one be present except persons authorized by the court;

A sealed deposition may be opened only by order of the court;

A trade secret or other confidential material not be disclosed or may only be disclosed in a designated way; or

The parties file designated material in sealed envelopes only to be opened as specified by the court.

V.S.C.R. 4:1(c).

If the motion for a protective order is denied in whole or in part, the court may, on such terms and conditions as are just, order that any party or person provide or permit discovery. V.S.C.R. 4:1(c).

The provisions of Rule 4:12(a)(4) apply to the award of expenses incurred in relation to the motion. V.S.C.R. 4:1(c).

The authorities cited in this At A Glance Guide are current as of the publication date. For authorities updated in real time, please see the SmartRules Guide for the litigation document you are drafting.