The Federal Judicial Conference's Civil Advisory Committee has proposed amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure that will limit the scope of discovery currently available to litigants in federal court. Among the proposed changes to the Rules are:
- Rule 26(b)(1): Limiting the scope of discovery from the current standard - information that is "reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence" - to instead encompass only information "relevant to any party's claims or defenses" and that is "proportional to the needs of the case, considering the amount in controversy, the importance of the issues at stake in the action, the parties' resources, the importance of the discovery in resolving the issues, and whether the burden or expense of the proposed discovery outweighs its likely benefit."
- Rule 30(a)(2): Changing the presumptive number of depositions permitted without leave of court to 5 depositions rather than the 10 depositions currently permitted by the Rule.
- Rule 30(d)(1): Reducing the presumptive limit of a deposition to one day of 6 hours, rather than one day of 7 hours currently permitted by the Rule.
- Rule 33(a)(1): Reducing the presumptive number of interrogatories to 15, rather than the 25 interrogatories currently permitted by the Rule.
- Rule 36(a)(2): Imposing a limitation of 25 requests to admit, including all discrete subparts, rather than the unlimited requests to admit currently permitted by the Rule.
The public comment period to the proposed amendments is open until February 15, 2014.