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RULE §1.55Discovery Orders

(a) Discovery orders generally. The Hearings director or the examiner may issue protective orders, orders compelling discovery responses, and orders creating a discovery control plan. Requests for discovery orders shall contain a sworn statement that, after due diligence, the desired information cannot be obtained through informal means, and that good cause exists for requiring discovery. The request for a discovery order may be denied:

  (1) if the request is untimely or unduly burdensome in light of the complexity of the proceeding;

  (2) if the requesting party has failed to exercise due diligence;

  (3) if the discovery would result in undue cost to the parties or unnecessary delay in the proceeding; or

  (4) for other good cause in the interest of justice.

(b) Motion to compel. Unless otherwise ordered, a party alleging another party's failure to comply with discovery requests shall file a sworn motion to compel with the Docket Services Section at least 10 days prior to the hearing on the merits.

(c) Deposition discovery orders. The Hearings Director or the examiner is authorized to issue a subpoena to take a deposition, which shall require that the witness appear and produce, at the time the deposition is taken, books, records, papers, or other objects that may be necessary and proper for the purposes of the proceeding.

(d) In camera inspection. The Hearings Director or the examiner may conduct in camera inspections of materials when requested by a party or when necessary to determine facts required to issue appropriate discovery orders.

(e) Review by Commissioners. Any discovery order issued by the examiner or the Hearings Director is subject to review by an appeal to the Commissioners. Any party that chooses to appeal a discovery order shall follow the requirements set forth in §1.38 of this title (relating to Interim Rulings and Appeals of Interim Rulings). A discovery order does not constitute a final order or decision.

(f) Compliance. The Commission may enforce compliance with any discovery order or subpoena pursuant to Texas Government Code §§2001.089, 2001.094, and 2001.201, and the Texas Natural Resources Code, §81.053 and §81.064, or as otherwise permitted by law.

Source Note: The provisions of this §1.55 adopted to be effective August 21, 2017, 42 TexReg 4131

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