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RayAnswers, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
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Experience:  30 years as a family law lawyer .
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My friend was supposedly served with discovery on sep 9th

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My friend was supposedly served with discovery on sep 9th 2016, but he has not seen any order signed by the judge, just his attorney said he has 30 days from then to deliver the documents and responses to his divorce.
then on sep 27, his attorney called him in and counciled him on what exactly he needed from him in the discovery, medical bills,,tax returns, retirement statements, expert witnesses listed,etc.
Well it takes a while to rummage thru his large file cabinets and find these items, and at the same time hes working nights and also raising a 5yr old child. So his attorney said he needed these things by sep 23, but here he is telling him the details of what he needs on sep 27th. So he pulled an allnighter two nights in a row and gathered all the items and made two copies and also scanned all items and put them on a usb memory stick and dropped it off to his attorneys office mail drop today at 9am. His attorney yelled at him on the fone yesterday when he dropped off half the items and said he needs the responses to draft a final version, and that he will not wait until the last minute!!
Which seems odd, because he has a plaque on his desk that says" if not for the last minute Id never get anything done!"
My friend asked him what happens when discovery deadline ends on a weekend or a holiday, to which his attorney replied ,it extends an additional day. So tommorows the deadline, but its Columbus day, so it gets pushed to Tuesday at 5pm.So my friend is wondering what to expect next, will his attorney just allow the discovery to lapse even though he got the documents and everything to his attorney before the deadline?
Please provide some insight, so I can help ease his please....
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I forgot to add, he said the mediation is on nov 10, and final hearing is on dec 15.

Hi and welcome to JA. Ray here to help you today.Please bear with me a few moments while I review your question and respond.

Texas here has specific deadlines.The lawyer will need some amount of time here to edit your answers to interrogatories and produce the requested documents on appropriate forms.

You are correct that a deadline tomorrow would have until Tuesday as closing date.The lawyer here has to get them to the other side by this date so again they need time to sort them and copy them and produce them by closing time.

The discovery process is governed by the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure. These rules say that parties to a case are entitled to any information that is “relevant” to the case as long as it is not “privileged” information. Discovery rules are meant to give fairly broad access to information.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Well today is sunday, so he has tomorrow and allday Tuesday correct? Can his attorney just say, im not working on it, let it lapse?

Requests for Disclosure

ask for basic information about the party and the allegations or contentions that the party is making. Examples include: the legal name of the parties to the lawsuit, the legal theories and factual basis for the party’s claims or defense, the names and contact information of people with relevant information about the case. For more information about other rules that apply to this type of discovery, read Rule 194.

Request for Production, Inspection or Entry

are requests to produce or allow examination of physical things such as documents, electronic files, emails, text messages, photographs, personal or real property that the other side has control of. This type of request must specify a reasonable time and place for the item to be produced. For more information about other rules that apply to this type of discovery, read Rule 196.


are written questions between parties. The party who receives the interrogatories is required to respond in writing, under oath. Under Level 2 discovery, each side is only allowed 25 written interrogatories that ask more than identifying information about a document. Additionally, the responding party may respond by telling the other side where the information can be found in public records instead of answering the question directly. For more information about other rules that apply to this type of discovery, read Rule 197.


are interviews that can be conducted either orally (in person or by telephone) or in writing. Depositions do not have to be only between parties to the case, but can also be taken from witnesses with information about the case. Depositions are subject to many rules including: notice requirements, scope of questioning, location and time limits. You should read these rules carefully before attempting to conduct a deposition. For more information about other rules that apply to this type of discovery, read Rules 199-203.

This may help you understand the deadlines you want to avoid sanctions by the judge for failure to complete these timely.

He would have these days so you are doing the best you can, the lawyer can seek a Rule 11 agreement to extend the deadlines if he has too.

A Rule 11 Agreement is an agreement which is made in compliance with Rule 11 (no big surprise there) of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure. Rule 11 says that an agreement between the attorneys or parties involved in a law suit can be made enforceable and binding in one of two ways:
(1) if it is in writing, the agreement must be signed by the attorneys or parties making the agreement and it must be filed with the papers of the Court; or
(2) if it is not in writing, the agreement must be made (stated) in open court (while court is in session) and made part of the official record of the case.

The Rule 11 Agreement must be clear and complete. Written agreements can be typed or hand-written. If oral, the record must show that all parties consented to the agreement.

Rule 11 Agreements are used for many different issues when agreements are made during the course of a case. For example, your situation an agreement to extend discovery deadlines.

I appreciate the chance to help you today,I think you will be fine here you are doing the best you can.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
he just dropped them off at his attorneys maildrop, does he need to call his attorney and tell him the documents are waiting there, or just let the attorney find them on Tuesday morning?

Yes he needs to tell them most likely the lawyer will be working Monday anyway.Thats reasonable to communicate it here.I wish him the best here.Thanks again.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
you didn't answer about what would happen if his attorney throws his hands up and says, let the deadline lapse without delivering the discovery now that it has been delivered to his office? Does he need to print off a copy and deliver it himself to opposing council if his attorney fails too?

The lawyer is responsible for the deadline or to extend it by Rule 11 agreement.It is arguably malpractice to miss the deadline here.If he gets it to the lawyer as you state its on the lawyer.Lawyers work on Columbus Day, I do too if you have deadlines you work here.

Thanks again.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
mmm How would it be malpractice if the attorney can simply say the client never delivered the discovery items? I mean he dropped them off in person to the mailbox slot in the door, so how does he prove that..?

Well it would help if he kept another copy of what he dropped off, email the lawyer that he did so and when.I think your friend will be fine he got him the documents, email or text the lawyer that he delivered them, the lawyer can get an extension Rule 11 agreement if he has too.Lawyers do these all the time.

If you can positive rate when we are done it is always much appreciated.

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