AN ACT AMENDING THE RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE TO MODERNIZE DISCOVERY OF EXPERT WITNESSES AND CLARIFYING EXPERT WITNESS COSTS IN CIVIL ACTIONS. Enacted July 16, 2015. Effective October 1, 2015.
Summary date: Jul 20 2015 - View summary
Summary date: Jun 30 2015 - View summary
Senate committee substitute makes the following changes to the 2nd edition.
Deletes the existing language in GS 1A-1, Rule 26(b)(4) concerning trial preparation and experts and replaces it with the language proposed in the previous edition as Rule 26(b)(4a). Makes additional clarifying and organizational changes.
Summary date: Apr 21 2015 - View summary
House committee substitute makes the following changes to the 1st edition.
Deletes language which stated parties have the option of submitting a written report of the opinion that an expert witness will express and the basis and reasons for it, unless otherwise stipulated or ordered by the court. Now provides that this option exists and does not provide for preemption by the court or by stipulation.
Makes technical changes.
Adds clarifying language that provides that the notice requirements provided in Rule 26(b) concerning witnesses providing written reports do not apply if neither party had less than 120 days notice of the trial.
Summary date: Mar 27 2015 - View summary
Enacts new GS 1A-1, Rule 26(b)(4a), in the Rules of Civil Procedure, concerning trial preparation and the discovery of experts, providing that the discovery of facts known and opinions held by experts that are otherwise discoverable under the specified provisions of this Rule and acquired or developed in anticipation of litigation or for trial can only be obtained as provided in this subdivison including, but not limited to, requiring the disclosure of the identity of any witness that may be used at trial to present evidence, the option of submitting a written report of the opinion that an expert witness will express and the basis and reasons for it, the ability to require through interrogatories the other party to identify those witnesses expected to be called as expert witnesses, and specified information related to their testimony. Also includes provisions concerning depositions of an expert that may testify, setting out procedures and the limitations of deposing the specified expert witnesses.
Establishes that a party seeking discovery under the specified provisions must pay the expert a reasonable fee for the time spent at that expert's deposition. Provides that specified drafts of reports from experts are protected from disclosure and are not discoverable regardless of the form the draft is recorded in. Provides protection for communications between a party's attorney and an expert witness with limited exceptions. Sets out procedures for disclosing expert witness testimony for those parties that have agreed to the submission of written reports pursuant to Rule 26(b)(6)a.2., or those parties seeking disclosure by way of interrogatory, providing for disclosure by scheduling order in accordance with the specified provisions for serving written reports when an agreement on the submission of reports cannot be reached.
Amends GS 7A-314(d), making a clarifying and conforming change.
Effective October 1, 2015, applying to claims or motions for costs pending or filed on or after that date.