When two parties engage in a civil lawsuit, both are entitled to a pre-trial discovery process to gather information for their trial preparation. The Federal Rules of Civil Procedures offer liberal discovery provisions. Plaintiffs who suspect that they were wronged can file a civil lawsuit, even if they do not have solid evidence.
During the discovery process, the defense is forced to give them the evidence so that they can build a case. The federal discovery rules are broad. Under Rule 26(b)(1), parties may obtain discovery regarding any nonprivileged matters that are relevant to any claim or defense. The tools used in discovery included interrogatories, depositions, and requests for admission. Parties can also compel each other to access documents, real property, and other things for review or testing.
What is Admission?
In a civil action, a request for admission is a form of discovery that lets one party request that another party admits or deny the truth of a statement under oath. If it is admitted, the statement is considered to be true for all purposes of the trial, and other parties may request this discovery to verify that documents are genuine.
The requests for admissions by the parties are generally used toward the end of this process to settle any uncontested issues that may simplify the trial process. The rules for this process will vary based on jurisdiction. An admission is not the same as a confession. A confession admits guilt in a criminal case, and it does not work the same in a civil case.
Interrogatories and Admissions
There are two forms of discovery that are often used in the pre-trial process. These are interrogatories and admissions – often sent to those through the mail, giving them 30 days to respond. Interrogatories and admissions differ from each other. Understanding the difference can help to ensure the answers given are what is required.
Interrogatories – In discovery, when one side sends interrogatories to the other, they request answers to questions that clarify the case at hand. Unless the judge limits the number of interrogatories, most of the interrogatories sent out usually consists of 40 questions. The answers to interrogatories are not filed with the court. They are to be sent back to the parties who requested the answers.
All of the answers within the interrogatory document must be verified, which is accomplished by signing the verification form that accompanies the documents. All of the answers should be short, concise, and answer the question that was presented. Any false or incomplete statements could be punishable by the court, which could result in an error in your case.
Admissions – The requests for admissions are written requests that ask for the other side to admit or deny that certain facts about the case are true. These could also request the other side to admit or deny statements or opinions of fact, the application of the law to fact, or whether a submitted document is genuine.
Each party is generally allowed 40 questions a piece for admissions. The only caveat is for authentication of documents, which has no limit. These requests allow for the 30-day response period and should not be submitted to the court, only the party that requested them. If you fail to respond, the request you have been called to answer will be considered established by the court.
The sufficient answers to the request for admission include “admit” or “deny.” All of the admissions must be clear and concise, even if only verifying a part of the answer. If you are unsure of how to answer the admission question or object to the question, this must also be stated clearly with the reason.
If you don’t know the answer or have enough information to answer, you should make sure that a reasonable effort has been made to answer the question. Let the other side know that you cannot confirm nor deny the answer.
All of the answers provided are subject to the penalty of perjury. False statements are punishable by the court. If untruthful answers are provided, the case could be lost.
To simplify, interrogatories are questions that need to be answered to provide supporting information to a case – think “interrogation.” Admissions are questions that verify if the question or fact is true or not.
The Purpose of Admissions in Civil Law
When involved in a civil lawsuit, you will likely be presented with at least one set of discovery questions. These questions will most likely be a set of interrogatories, a request for documents, or a request for admission. In any circumstance, the request for information will be pertinent to the case. These requests do not come from the court but from the other party in the lawsuit. These requests are easy to understand and have directions laid out for your answers.
Requests for admission are used in litigation proceedings and in determining if the particular facts of the case are valid. The purpose of admission is to help narrow the scope of the case and determine if the facts and aspects are in dispute between the parties of the case.
Why Admission is Important in Civil Cases
Using admission to establish the scope of the case is important for two reasons. The first reason is for the party to establish proof of important and essential facts about the case. The second is to help eliminate any issues that are not relevant in the case proceedings.
The majority of the money and time spent in a case is for discovery and pre-trial case preparation. If some of the elements of the case are considered in agreement, then time and resources can be cut down. For everything else, it can either be handled through settlement mediations or in the trial in front of a court.
Handling admission requests prior to trial will also help reduce the amount of evidence that the court will need to rule upon and whether it is admissible in court.
How a Personal Injury Lawyer Handles Admission in Civil Cases
A personal injury lawyer is the best person to talk to when presented with interrogatories or admissions in a civil lawsuit. These lawyers are the ones that you call when you need to file a lawsuit against a negligent party, so it would only make sense that they would be the ones to help you with the discovery evidence in the case.
Most personal injury lawyers will handle the entire case from start to finish. They also work on them based on a contingency fee. Contingency fees are a contract between the client and the legal firm stating that no fees are taken until the case has been won. The lawyer will handle the lawsuit and the aspects surrounding it, only collecting if your case is won.
The lawyers are also experienced in handling the requests for discovery that may be issued by the opposing party.
How TorkLaw Handles Interrogatories and Admission in Civil Cases
TorkLaw is a team of experienced personal injury lawyers who can handle your case’s discovery process through judgment. With years of experience handling personal injury cases, we have learned what it takes to help our clients get through the process easily and without additional stress.
Nobody likes receiving a request in the mail with interrogatories or admission questions inside. This type of paperwork can create panic if you don’t know that it is coming. We prepare you for the paperwork by preparing you with the understanding of your case and the process of the lawsuit.
We find that many legal firms take on clients but don’t necessarily explain the entire process to them. This lack of information can cause unnecessary concern and a lack of trust between the client and the legal firm. There is a timeline for interrogatories and admissions, which usually only allows a 30-day window for response. If these questions are not answered truthfully, it can be considered perjury.
Our lawyers want you to understand the process of your case. We don’t leave you to fend for yourself after your consultation. We walk you through the process, help handle the discovery, and ensure you understand what is expected of you in the process.
If you or a loved one are seeking the help of a legal professional that can help with the personal injury process, we implore you to contact our law office. We offer FREE and confidential case consultations. Our experts are standing by to hear your case. As always, we are available anytime at 888.845.9696 or online through the contact form on our website.
Don’t delay getting the professional legal help you need because you are afraid of the process. Let TorkLaw handle your interrogatory and admission questions, helping streamline and expedite your case in the court. Our clients are our first priority – as is their understanding of the legal process.
Call us today for your consultation and begin the process of getting the justice and monetary compensation you deserve. TorkLaw is on your side, fighting for your case.