Foreign Evidence Compulsion

Bayeux Tapestry – Scene 57: the death of King Harold. Myrabella via Wikimedia Commons.

Back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, I took Civil Procedure from a couple of highly talented professors.  One was among my favorite teachers of all time— he taught the concept of joinder with a shopping bag full of Beanie Babies™ and, for some baffling reason, a Jessie the Cowgirl™ doll from Toy Story 2.*  On the surface, that’s a very weird thing for a licensed attorney to put into a blog post, but the fact is, generations of JD’s from the University of Missouri-Kansas City know joinder cold because of Jeffrey Berman’s frequent flier card at Toys ‘R’ Us.  Third-party claims, cross-claims, counterclaims? Yeah, we got this.

That said, due to the compressed nature of that semester, and the reality that you just can’t learn everything you need to know as a 1L, we never really touched on certain basic concepts.  Like “how do you serve process?” or “why is the judge such a grumpy gus and how do I as 
Continue Reading Subpoena: both a sword and a shield.

Credit Suisse, one of the biggest banks in Zurich.  Which is saying something.  Dietmar Rabich / Wikimedia Commons / “Zürich (CH), Paradeplatz — 2011 — 1381” / CC BY-SA 4.0

I’ve seen a huge spike lately in the number of divorce attorneys calling about serving subpoenas on offshore banks.  The routine story: Spouse A (usually the wife, but not always) has learned that Spouse B (usually the husband, but not always) has tucked a few thousand dollars into some offshore account, usually in one of several countries that are famous for stringent banking secrecy laws.  Switzerland, the Cayman Islands, and the Channel Islands are those that come to mind, but protecting depositors’ privacy is fairly universal in the industrialized world.  As such, the calls haven’t been limited to the famous banking havens.

Continue Reading Divorce, Money Hidden Offshore, and The Hague

1o5tclYou’ve served the complaint on all of your defendants, they’ve entered their appearances, and everybody is girded up for battle.  Discovery commences.  In one of your depositions, you learn that one of the defendants was somehow selling a knock-off of your client’s product in Europe through a British distributor, and you are convinced that somewhere

Few things in transnational litigation are as vexing or as unnecessarily frightful as the Letter Rogatory.  Honestly, they’re not that complicated—they just have a few necessary elements that many practitioners miss, and because they’re signed by the judge, we worry.  A lot.  Perhaps this will shed some light…

What is it?

Black’s Law Dictionary

You’ve served the complaint on all of your defendants, they’ve entered their appearances, and everybody is girded up for battle.  Discovery commences.  In one of your depositions, you learn that one of the defendants was somehow selling a knock-off of your client’s product through a distributor in Manitoba, and you are convinced that somewhere in