Nevada Rule of Civil Procedure 27, 28, 29 and 30
These provisions of the Nevada Revised Statutes govern depositions and the discovery process.
Rule 27 – Allows for a deposition to take place before an action even commences. Apparently the purpose of the rule is to perpetuate testimony regarding testimony that may be cognizable in a latter action. If this pre action deposition is desired an attorney need file a petition requesting as much naming the parties sought to be deposed along with the subject matter of the expected action along with the facts desired to be perpetuated. Upon hearing if the court is satisfied that the perpetuation of the testimony may prevent a failure or delay of justice it shall order such deposition to take place specifying the subject matter of such examination along with the person upon whom such deposition will take place. Such deposition may be had by oral examination or written interrogatories. Such deposition testimony bay then be used in an action involving the same subject matter at a later date.
Rule 28 – Establishes before whom a deposition may be taken. The rule states that a deposition may be taken by an officer authorized to administer oaths by the laws of the Unites States. No deposition may be had before a person who is a relative or employee or attorney of any of the parties. Nor may any such deposing person have any financial interest in the action.
Rule 29 – Provides for stipulations regarding the discovery process. Essentially the parties have wide latitude to stipulate to discovery rules as the parties deem fit. The parties may stipulate that depositions be taken before any person, at any time or place, upon any desired notice, and they can stipulate to the manner in which such depositions can be used.
Rule 30 – Establishes the rules for depositions upon oral examination. Generally speaking depositions can be taken without “leave of court”. Thus ordinarily it is not necessary to put on a motion or petition requesting permission from the court of such deposition. Of course a party wishing to take a deposition must comply with NRCP 26 which governs when discovery may be had. Remember that discovery may be had at any time after the filing of a joint case conference report or else no sooner than ten days following a parties filing of a separate case conference report. The second requirement per NRCP26 is that any party requesting such deposition or other discovery method must have complied with NRCP 16.1 which governs pretrial disclosures.
Leave of court will be required if counsel seeks to depose a party who has already been deposed in the matter or if counsel seeks to obtain such deposition prior to the time specified in Rule 26(a) as just outlined above. Such warranting circumstances might be when a party who needs to be deposed is likely to leave the state before the time specified in NRCP 26(a).
Deposition require proper notice. Sufficient notice must be provided at least 15 days prior to such deposition. Every party of the action must be noticed. Such notice must state the time and place for the deposition as well as the name and address of each person to be examined. If counsel seeks the production of materials then he or should notice by service a subpoena duces tecum to each person to be examined. Such notice must include the designation of materials to be produced.
Be sure to include in your notice the method by which such deposition will be recorded. For instance describe whether such deposition will be by way of sound, sound and visual recording, or stenographic. Of course parties taking depositions pay the fees associated with them. Be advised that counsel can include in his or her notice requests for production of documents and tangible things at the taking of the deposition.
If counsel seeks information from a corporation or partnership then all counsel should name the corporation and describe the matters sought for examination. It will then be the corporation’s obligation to designate one of its officers, directors, or agents to testify on behalf of the organization.
Parties may stipulate or a court may order upon motion for deposition by telephone or remote electronic means. If the deposition is by telephone then it is to be taken at the place where the deponent is located. The party noticing the deposition will arrange for the presence of the officer in such location. The party noticing the deposition thus has the obligation for setting up all logistics and equipment necessary to accomplish such deposition.
Be mindful that objections in depositions are not to be argumentative or suggestive. The subject party of such deposition can be instructed not to answer a question only when necessary to preserve a privilege. If the court or discovery commissioner finds that there has been conduct with obstructed the nature of the deposition then the court or discovery commissioner can sanction the obstructing party accordingly.
If the deponent so choses he or she may have 30 days after being notified by the officer that a transcript is available in which to review the transcript and recording and if there are changes desired then to sign a statement eliciting any changes desired and the reasons for making them. The officer administering the deposition shall indicate on the certificate whether any review was requested and if so will append and changes made by the deponent within the 30 day window.
Be advised that in the event you fail to attend a deposition or subpoena the anticipated witness and other attorneys appear for the purpose of attending such deposition that the party who failed to attend or subpoena the witness will likely be responsible for paying attorney’s fees to the other side. Also know that if a party seeks to depose another parties’ expert witness then the deposing party will be responsible for paying the experts usual and custom hourly fee for such testimony. If a party deems the hourly rate of the expert to be unreasonable then such party can move for an order setting the compensation for this expert. The court may award attorney’s fees in favor of any such prevailing party at such motion hearing.