What Is Mandatory Discovery in a Nevada Personal Injury Case?
What is mandatory discovery in a Nevada personal injury case? That’s the question you may be wondering if you’re involved in a car accident case or other personal injury case in Nevada. Nevada Rules of Civil Procedure rule 16.1 requires certain disclosures from both parties.
The disclosures are required in all cases with a few exceptions. If you’re a party, you need to know about Nevada Rules of Civil Procedure rule 16.1 – mandatory pretrial discovery in Nevada. Your Las Vegas personal injury lawyer can help you understand what rule 16.1 means to your case. Here’s more about the rule.
The Basics of Mandatory Discovery in Nevada Civil Cases
Nevada Rules of Civil Procedure rule 16.1 requires both of the parties to a lawsuit to provide information to the other party. Each party must tell the other side some of the things they know about the case. You don’t have to disclose your trial strategy or your legal theory. Instead, you have to provide the other side with some information about the facts and evidence you have in the case.
The rules require each side to provide the information needed without being asked. The court doesn’t have to issue a special order before the parties have to provide the information. Instead, Nevada Rules of Civil Procedure rule 16.1 is a mandatory rule that applies in all cases.
What Are the Rules of Civil Procedure?
Nevada’s Rules of Civil Procedure are the rules that govern civil cases in Nevada. The rules determine the procedure for all civil cases from start to finish. The rules cover everything from what to put in court pleadings, how to serve documents on the other party to how to challenge evidence. The purpose of the rules is to make sure that civil cases proceed in a fair and uniform manner throughout the State of Nevada.
What Do You Have to Disclose Under the Mandatory Discovery Rule in Nevada?
There are several categories of information that you have to disclose under the mandatory discovery rule in Nevada. Types of required discovery include:
Witnesses – You must state the name of every person that you’re aware of that may have information about the case. If you have their address or phone number, you must include it. Even if the witness isn’t favorable to your case, you must tell the other side that you’re aware of the witness.
Exhibits – The rule requires you to provide a copy and a description of documents and other tangible items that are in your possession or control. It doesn’t matter whether you intend to use the exhibit at trial or not. Rule 16.1(a)(1)(B) requires you to provide copies of any discoverable items under Rules of Civil Procedure rule 26(b).
Computation of damages – You must provide documentation of how you arrive at the amount of damages that you’re seeking in the case. It’s also mandatory to include supporting documentation that shows how you arrive at the figure you’re requesting.
Insurance contract – If there’s an insurance policy that may be relevant to the case, you must give the other side a copy of it. For example, a car insurance policy may be relevant to a car accident claim.
Expert witnesses – When you plan to use an expert witness in your case, there are special disclosure requirements. You must have the expert create a summary of their opinion and the basis for their opinion. They must provide biographical information like their qualifications to be an expert, the compensation that they receive, publications they’ve authored in the last ten years and a list of other cases they’ve worked on in the previous four years. Your personal, treating physician doesn’t necessarily have to be an expert and follow the special disclosure requirements, but it’s essential to discuss questions about your personal treating physician with your injury attorney.
How Do You Make Disclosures Under Rule 16.1?
To make a rule 16.1 disclosure, you must formally serve the other side with the documents. That typically means sending the documents to the other party or their attorney by first-class mail.
There are other ways to provide service that are listed in Nevada Rules of Civil Procedure rule 5. You must also prepare a document for the court called a proof of service. The proof of service document verifies and creates a record that you provided the mandatory disclosures.
The Mandatory Discovery Rule Is a Starting Point for Discovery in Your Case
Mandatory discovery can be a great way to learn about the other side’s evidence in the case. But Rule 16.1 disclosures are only the beginning. You can build on the information that you receive with other tools of discovery like subpoenas, depositions, and informal interviews. Our team of Nevada accident attorneys can help you build your case.
How Do I Challenge the Other Side’s Disclosures?
If the other side doesn’t provide their mandatory disclosures or their disclosures are incomplete, you can bring the matter to the court’s attention. You can ask for a court order that warns them to comply with the rule or even an order that issues sanctions for their non-compliance.
The court may prevent a party from introducing evidence if they don’t include it in their mandatory disclosures. You can also appeal a jury verdict based on the court’s incorrect admission of evidence that a party fails to include in their mandatory disclosures.
If mandatory disclosures under Nevada Rules of Civil Procedure rule 16.1 seem like a big task, it’s because they’re a critical part of any personal injury case in Nevada. Mistakes in the mandatory discovery process can derail your case at the early stages. It’s also essential to ensure that the other side provides the information that they must provide so that you can build your case.
The skilled legal team at Adam S. Kutner Accident & Injury Attorneys knows what it takes to comply with mandatory discovery rules in personal injury cases in Nevada. We can help you ensure that you abide by the law. Also, we can help you evaluate the evidence in your case to build a strong claim for recovery. If you’re the victim of a personal injury in Nevada, our legal team invites you to call us today for a free evaluation of your claim.
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