Coronavirus Update: To New & Existing Clients Learn More ›

Super Lawyers
Illinois State Bar Association
Justia Lawyer Rating
Million Dollar Advocates Forum
Avvo Rating
BBB Accredited Business

Discovery - Investigating Your Case

Download PDF Version

The process by which you formally investigate the other party during litigation is known as discovery. The tools and techniques employed during this stage will help you identify the strengths and weaknesses of the other side’s arguments as well as the evidence upon which their arguments rest. Some of the most common discovery tools are described below with examples following their descriptions.

  • Interrogatories

    Interrogatories are written questions drafted by one party and required to be answered by the other. A party can only draft and demand answers to 30 interrogatories and this includes sub-parts unless the parties themselves or the court on its own decides there should be more. Those drafting interrogatories must send copies to all parties entitled to notice. The Supreme Court of Illinois had approved draft forms of interrogatories for various types of cases including motor vehicles accidents and medical malpractice. For more information, see Illinois Supreme Court Rule 213. Here are some sample interrogatories:

    Interrogatories 1 – Model interrogatories for motor vehicle accident cases.
    Interrogatories 2 – Sample interrogatories with answers from a MVA case.
    Interrogatories 3 – Sample 213f interrogatories with answers from a MVA case.
    Interrogatories 4 - Sample interrogatories with answers from a MVA case.
    Interrogatories 5 - Sample lay and expert witness interrogatories with answers from a MVA case.

  • Depositions

    Depositions allow parties to orally examine opposing parties or witnesses for general discovery purposes. However, they can also be for evidentiary purposes to be later used for trial but if a distinction is not made they are assumed to be for discovery. To depose a party, one must only give that party notice but to depose a witness, one must obtain a subpoena. The party deposing the other party or witness must pay all fees related to the deposition. They can only last three hours and may be recorded or conducted remotely. For more information, see Illinois Supreme Court Rule 202-207 and 210. Here are some sample depositions:

    Deposition 1 – Sample deposition of an expert physician witness in a MVA case.
    Deposition 2 – Sample deposition of a lay witness in a MVA case.
    Deposition 3 – Sample deposition of an expert surgeon witness in a MVA case.

  • Requests to Produce

    According to Illinois Supreme Court Rule 214, parties can request other parties to produce documents, objects, other tangible things, access to real estate for inspection, or even information related to these things if they are relevant to the underlying subject matter of the case. The party making the requests for production can specify a time when it is due but it cannot be less than 28 days. At that time, the requested party must produce the item, access, or information in the manner in which it is normally kept and must “seasonably supplement” the production to the extent possible. The party requesting production must give notice to all parties entitled of the requests actually served. Below is a sample request for production:

    Request for Production 1 – Model request for production in MVA case.

  • Requests to Admit

    One very useful tool that plaintiffs’ lawyers use in automobile accident litigation to narrow the scope of cases is a request for admission. Requests to admit ask the opposing party to admit facts are true or documents are genuine with respect to the case. Including all sub-parts, only 30 requests to admit are allowed unless the court or parties agree to a different number. However, if the party given the requests to admit does not admit, deny, or object to a particular request in 28 days then that request is deemed to be true. For more information on requests to admit, see Illinois Supreme Court Rule 216.

    Request for Admission 1 – Sample requests for admission in MVA case with subsequent conviction.
    Request for Admission 2 – Model requests for admission in MVA litigation.

Look at our product liability page for more information.
250M + Recovered for Our Clients
No Fee Guarantee We Never Charge a Fee Unless We Win
Available 24/7 Available 24-Hours per Day When You Need Us
Client Reviews
Jonathan Rosenfeld was professionally objective, timely, and knowledgeable. Also, his advice was extremely effective regarding my case. In addition, Jonathan was understanding and patient pertaining to any of my questions or concerns. I was very happy with the end result and I highly recommend Jonathan Rosenfeld. Michonne Proulx
Extremely impressed with this law firm. They took control of a bad motorcycle crash that left my uncle seriously injured. Without any guarantee of a financial recovery, they went out and hired accident investigators and engineers to help prove how the accident happened. I am grateful that they worked on a contingency fee basis as there was no way we could have paid for these services on our own. Ethan Armstrong
This lawyer really helped me get compensation for my motorcycle accident case. I know there is no way that I could have gotten anywhere near the amount that Mr. Rosenfeld was able to get to settle my case. Thank you. Daniel Kaim
Jonathan helped my family heal and get compensation after our child was suffered a life threatening injury at daycare. He was sympathetic and in constant contact with us letting us know all he knew every step of the way. We were so blessed to find Jonathan! Giulia
Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial. Lisa