Uniform Interstate Depositions and Discovery Act (UIDDA)-Louisiana

It is the duty of the judge or clerk of the court in Louisiana, in accordance with UIDDA Louisiana procedures and a party's request, to issue a subpoena for service to a person to whom the international subpoena is addressed. A foreign subpoena's provisions should be identified and included in the subpoena's caption and case number.

The Uniform Interstate Depositions and Discovery Act were created by the Uniform Law Commission to simplify the time-consuming and onerous procedure of conducting discovery outside of state jurisdictions (UIDDA). As of 2007, the UIDDA has been implemented by most states and offers a uniform method for litigants to acquire depositions and other information from persons and organizations situated outside of their jurisdiction. Out-of-state subpoenas for state court matters are now in line with the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 45 under the UIDDA.

BACKGROUND

 The original or a certified copy of a foreign subpoena must be presented to the clerk of court of the parish in which discovery is requested to be conducted in this state for the issue of a subpoena under UIDDA and Louisiana laws. If a subpoena request is made in accordance with UIDDA and Louisiana laws., it does not constitute attendance in court.

All counsel of record in the action to which the subpoena pertains, as well as the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of any party not represented by counsel, must be included in or appended to the subpoena.

HOW ARE INTERSTATE DEPOSITIONS TAKEN IN LOUISIANA

If a subpoena was issued by the clerk of the court, the application for a protective order or for an order to enforce, quash, or modify it must be made in accordance with the district court rules, the Code of Civil Procedure, and rules of professional conduct of Louisiana and must be submitted to the district court that issued the subpoena.

Depositions can be taken outside of the United States in order to obtain testimony or documents or other things if the parties are given reasonable notice in writing of the time and location of the deposition, the name and address of each person to be examined, and, if the name is not known, a general description sufficient to identify them or the particular class or group to which they belong.

There are a variety of ways to get a witness' deposition. For example, a person allowed to administer oaths under the law of this state or the United States may conduct a deposition before a court-appointed official, and a court-appointed official who has the authority to administer any appropriate oath by virtue of their appointment.

Any time, place, and method established by the parties may be used to administer an oath, and a person designated by the agreement will have the authority to do so.  Louisiana’s courts will not issue an order or letter of commitment to another state, territory, district, or foreign jurisdiction without a formal motion filed by the party requesting the order or letter of commission. If there is no opposition, the commission or letter rogatory may be issued ex parte; if there is, it must be announced and subject to a contrary hearing under conditions that are fair and reasonable. 

If the deposition cannot be taken in any other way, a commission or a letter rogatory might be issued according to the UIDDA and Louisiana. The absence of a full transcript or the fact that the testimony was not given under oath does not necessitate the exclusion of evidence gathered in a foreign nation in response to a letter of rogatory. Any person may be deposed in another state, territory, district, or foreign jurisdiction while no action is pending by a court of Louisiana in relation to any subject that may be cognizable under the UIDDA and Louisiana. The deposition may be taken in any way and under any UIDDA and Louisiana conditions, the court deems appropriate.

Witnesses may be compelled to appear and testify in the same manner and by the same UIDDA and Louisiana procedures as may be used for the purpose of taking testimony in proceedings pending in any other state or territory, district or foreign jurisdiction, or whenever notice or agreement is required to take the testimony of a witness or witnesses in Louisiana.

INCORPORATION OF LETTERS ROGATORY AND THE UIDDA

Any interested individual may request an order, or the government can respond to a letter rogatory. As long as the ruling does not specify differently, the practice and procedure must be that of the court that issued the order in Louisiana. To the extent that they agree to it, a resident of Louisiana may voluntarily provide their evidence or statement or provide papers or other materials for use in proceedings before a tribunal in another state, territory, district, or country.

HOW TO SERVE A FOREIGN SUBPOENA IN LOUSIANA

Clerical procedures for issuing discovery state subpoenas are established under the UIDDA and Louisiana, making the process easy and efficient. As a result of its lack of judicial monitoring, UIDDA and Louisiana laws remove the requirement for the discovering state first to seek commissions, letters rogatory, miscellaneous actions, or any other preparatory processes. Obtaining an enforceable subpoena in the discovery state does not need the use of local lawyers. Because of this, and because it is fair to witnesses, the UIDDA and Louisiana require subpoena enforcement motions to be filed in the discovery state and subject to the discovery state's laws.

There must be a list of all parties and the names, addresses, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses of all attorneys of record with the subpoena. A list of all parties and the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of all lawyers of record must be included with the subpoena when it is issued in accordance with the law. The committee concluded that the lawyer issuing the subpoena already has the responsibility to submit a notice of deposition to all lawyers of record and any unrepresented parties. Therefore, this requirement does not burden them. 

Louisiana’s Rules of Professional Conduct and the District Court Rules govern any application for an order enforcing, quashing, or modifying a subpoena issued by a clerk of the court that must be presented to the district court that issued the subpoena. There must be consideration of the need to establish consistency of the law in its subject matter among states that enact it in the application and interpretation of the UIDDA. 

RESTRICTIONS TO THE APPLICATION OF THE UIDDA IN LOUISIANA

An inspection subpoena does not fall within the definition of "subpoena" for the jurisdictional purposes of UIDDA and Louisiana practice.  A subpoena to examine a person is not included. A subpoena is unnecessary in personal injury lawsuits since the plaintiff is already subject to the jurisdiction of the foreign state. 

"Court of Record" does not include subpoenas in administrative or arbitral processes.  Subpoenas issued according to the UIDDA and Louisiana may be enforced and challenged only if they are presented to the clerk of court in Louisiana for issuance in the name of the district court in this state, which in turn invokes Louisiana jurisdiction.

APPLICATION OF THE FOREIGN SUBPOENA RULES IN LOUISIANA

A subpoena will be issued in the foreign state by a lawyer of record for a party in the action currently ongoing there when a case is filed and the witness to be deposed resides or is located in Louisiana. The clerk's office will send a copy of the subpoena form to the lawyer in the out-of-state proceeding. A Louisiana subpoena with the identical wording as the out-of-state subpoena will be prepared by the lawyer. Delivered to the clerk's office in Louisiana will be a completed and executed out-of-state subpoena and a finished but not yet executed Louisiana subpoena. 

Subpoenas should come with a brief letter notifying the clerk in this state that they are being sought under the UIDDA and Louisiana law. When the out-of-state subpoena is handed to the clerk of court,  the court in Louisiana will then issue a similar subpoena. For the clerk’s issuance to be valid, it is necessary to include the signature, stamping, and assigning a case or docket number of the subpoena. According to the UIDDA and Louisiana (which also includes any relevant municipal laws), the party requesting the issuance of the subpoena will pay any required filing and service costs and then have the subpoena served on the deponent in accordance with the UIDDA and Louisiana law. 

Louisiana has jurisdiction over the deponent since the clerk of the court issued a subpoena, which is only a formality. Only the subpoena issued by the foreign state and the draft subpoena to be served need to be provided to the clerk of the court according to the UIDDA and Louisiana. The subpoena may be issued in this state without the requirement to retain local lawyers or bring the case to a court. Subpoenas from other jurisdictions may be served according to the UIDDA and Louisiana by simply reissuing the international subpoena and delivering it to the deponent in accordance with this state's legislation. The subpoena may be issued and served as per the UIDDA and Louisiana without the involvement of local lawyers or the judiciary since the procedure is straightforward and inexpensive. 

To ensure that the subpoena is delivered, the UIDDA and Louisiana mandate that it include or be accompanied by the names, addresses, and phone numbers of all lawyers of record and any party who is not represented. That's not an unreasonable duty for an attorney, as they are already required to notify all counsel and unrepresented parties of the deposition date and time. If the deponent (or, as will frequently be, the deponent's lawyer) wants to discover and contact the other attorneys in the case, the UIDDA and Louisiana provision makes it simple. If the subpoena is properly served, it should include the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of any parties represented by counsel, as well as those parties not represented by counsel, and this information should be included in the subpoena. 

IMPLEMENTATION OF LOUISIANA LAW

Any investigation approved must be in accordance with UIDDA and Louisiana law. Non-party witnesses in a case filed in a foreign jurisdiction in this state have a strong interest in being protected from any excessive or unnecessarily onerous discovery requests. As a result, the discovery process must follow the same UIDDA and Louisiana rules as if the lawsuit had been brought in this state in the first place. 

For any application to a court according to the UIDDA and Louisiana for a protective order to enforce, quash, modify, or enforce a subpoena or any other order related to discovery under the UIDDA and Louisiana, the Act requires that the rules or statutes in the State be followed, including procedural, evidentiary and conflict of laws rules.

Any non-party witnesses in a foreign jurisdiction are protected against unreasonable or overly onerous discovery requests under the UIDDA and Louisiana. This is done by mandating that any discovery motions be resolved under the laws of Louisiana.

Louisiana

Uniform Interstate Depositions and Discovery Act Adopted - 2014
Bill Number: HB 619 Sponsor Abramson
LA. REV. STAT. § 13.3825;
Louisiana Supreme Court Click Here

for assistance domesticating and serving A Subpoena in Louisiana

Simply pick up the phone and call Toll-Free (800) 774-6922 or click the service you want to purchase. Our dedicated team of professionals is ready to assist you. We can handle all your process service needs; no job is too small or too large!  For a complete list of our Louisiana Process Service Coverage Areas, Click Here!

Contact us for more information about our process-serving agency. We are ready to provide service of process to all our clients globally from our offices in New York, Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island, Westchester, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Washington, D.C.

"Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction, and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives" - Foster, William A

Sources

1. It is possible to address a rogatory letter to "the appropriate authority in" or "the appropriate judicial authority in" (here name the state or country).

2. One who lives or is discovered in this state may be forced to testify or provide documents in another state, territory, district, or foreign jurisdiction under the authority of (1) R.S. 13:3825. (2) R.S. 13:3825(a).

3. For example, a court-assigned witness may be required to provide testimony or make a statement in front of a witness designated by the court, according to the order. Any oaths required will be administered by the person chosen.

4. According to the committee, failing to comply with this condition does not result in a fault in the subpoena's service since it does not constitute a jurisdictional flaw

5. With this requirement, the deponent (or, as is often the case, the deponent's lawyer) may quickly acquire the identities of all the other people involved and establish contact with them. Most states require that deponents be given a copy of the requisite notice of deposition, as well as the evidence of service, at the time the subpoena is served, as the notice and proof of service will normally include the information needed.

6. Discovery is subject to all applicable laws and regulations in this state, including but not limited to the Code of Civil Procedure and any district court rules controlling the deposition, production of papers or other tangible things, or examination of the premises.

7. For example, medical exams in personal injury cases are governed by state discovery laws (the analogous federal rule is Rule 35 of the Federal Regulations of Civil Procedure) rather than federal rules.

8. The legislation in this state requiring a  commission or letters rogatory to take a deposition in a foreign jurisdiction is neither changed or repealed by this Act. A foreign court's commission or letter rogatory is no longer required in order for a deposition to be conducted in this state as a result of the Act