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TexLaw, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 4430
Experience:  Lead trial/International commercial attorney licensed 11 yrs
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In a federal FCRA civil case, I answered the defendants 23

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In a federal FCRA civil case, I answered the defendant's 23 interrogatories with answers 14 times, and objections for the others. The attorney responded by telling me that my objections were improper and that if I didn't change them he was fling a MTC the next day asking for sanctions and costs. I researched what he said and revised my answers by responding with an allowed objection, and "Subject to and without waiving" and answered all but two of them. Now he's writing me that "Subject to" means I'm hiding something and unless I answer with “without waiving the objection” instead he's filing the MTD tomorrow. They are demanding my SSN, and I'm objecting. (privileged and confidential, protected, etc.) and he says since this is an FCRA case I have to provide it.
1) Is he correct re: Subject to?
2) how likely is the court to sanction me and make me pay for costs?
3) is he correct re: SSN?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  TexLaw replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your question.

Since you are the Plaintiff in an FCRA case, whether the defendant's request for your social security number is XXXXX the scope of discovery is debatable, depending on the specific circumstances of the case.

What I mean by this is that an objection that the request seeks to violate your right to privacy and seeks information outside of the scope of discovery is one that is made in good faith. A motion to compel is the only way for the judge to rule on whether your objections are valid or not. If you are trying to work in good faith with the other side (which it sounds like you are), then you should not worry about sanctions. The threat of sanctions sounds like the defense attorney is trying to bully you.

Making your answer "subject to" the objection is perfectly fine as well. If he wants to get a ruling on the objection, it is his right to do so. But, it is your right to make the objection, if the objection is made in good faith. Don't withdraw the objections based on his threat. Tell him to get a ruling from the judge and tell him that you are trying to cooperate, but that you do not believe he is entitled to the information requested.

Sanctions would probably be the cost of the motion (between 500 to 1500).

SSN's are not always disclosable. If the information that the defendant seeks may be obtained without the use of your SSN, then the defendant should obtain the information that way (which is less intrusive).

Please let me know if you have further questions.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I filed IFP. Will thus have a bearing on sanctions, especially since I have repeatedly offered to work this put, outside the court? Def. atty. says that since there's only 11 days left in the discovery period, that there's no time to wait for us to work it out. But his waiting until 38 days before the discovery period is up to propound discovery on me is not my problem, right? He already asked for a two week extension which I did not oppose and he got.
Expert:  TexLaw replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your response.

I'm not certain what you mean by "IFP."

That you have attempted to work with the defense counsel, you will not likely be sanctioned. Sanctions are an extraodrinary remedy.

It indeed is not your problem that the defense attorney waited until the end of the discovery period to seek discovery.

Sanctions are usually reserved for abusive behavior or violations of court orders. They do not seem to apply in the situation you have described, and I think this is the defense attorney just trying to scare you into capitulation.

Hold your ground.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
"IFP" = in forma paupris.
Also- the time for me to respond (30 days + 3 days mailing) was up yesterday. Could he be trying to trick me into revising and responding late and therefore waiving my right to object?
They answered me one day after the deadline and had multiple objections. I informed the day after I received their answer of that and and asked three more times for their revised answers. They haven't responded. Do I file a MTC tomorrow?
Expert:  TexLaw replied 3 years ago.
Amending your responses does not waive your objections. However, I really think you should stand on those objections.

In regard to their responses and objections that were late, you should immediately file a MTC, with one of your arguments being that the responses were late and thus the objections are waived.

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