Thursday, July 21, 2005


Igots over at Color of Law has been posting fairly regularly about work at a PI firm (that's Personal Injury, not the much cooler Private Investigator) this summer. Here is an excerpt from a recent post that bothered me:
At our depo[sition] the other day, the friendly insurance lawyer turns out to be a contracted temp lawyer. She doesn't really work for them. She tells us that the insurance litigation department is experiencing some turnover.

We got several cases pending with them. So what do we do? Over the next few days, we're going to flood them with discovery requests, followed by a settlement offer. This may be a good months for us.
This sounds like it comes awfully close to being an improper discovery request that is for an "improper purpose, such as to harass or to cause unnecessary delay or needless increase in the cost of litigation," (Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 26(g)(2)(B)... or whatever the equivalent state discovery rule may be) doesn't it? Hearing an opposing attorney say that the opponent doesn't have a full staff and then showering them with discovery requests and settlement offers... sounds fishy to me. Even if the discovery requests are for things related to the litigation (and hence fair game), it seems a little unethical to prey on the misfortunes of your opponents. Maybe I'm just being naive, but this is the type of thing that can't help the perception of lawyers in our country.


At 10:04 PM, Blogger biff said...

Abusive? Maybe. But it does happen. Especially in PI.

At 8:07 AM, Blogger Unreasonable Man said...

I didn't necessarily say I was surprised... it just seemed so casual, so routine. I guess that's what bothered me the most.

At 10:31 AM, Blogger Lawgirl said...

What bothers me more is that he/she is blogging about litigation strategy. Isn't this a violation of legal ethics? And what if the other side finds the post and draws the judge's attention to it in a motion to quash the discovery on the ground that it is an abusive tactic? Oh right. It's an anonymous blog so they'll never figure out who it is. sure.


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