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The overwhelming majority of cases are resolved without trial, an indisputable fact that puts a premium on the productive use of civil discovery.  Poorly planned and executed discovery deprives litigants of information needed to accurately evaluate their cases, and can lead to costly delays and expensive motions practice. As litigation and discovery costs continue to rise, the need to look at the process strategically–to plan, sequence, and execute discovery to maximize its effect, anticipate issues, and devise solutions to issues as they arise–has never been greater. The MSBA’s newly revised Maryland Discovery Problems and Solutions  (MSBA, 2d Ed. 2020) addresses this need by thoroughly examining all Maryland discovery rules and tools, and explaining how to use them effectively.  

With the American Bar Association’s 2005 publication of Discovery Problems and Solutions under the Federal Rules of Procedure, U.S. District Judge Paul W. Grimm, and attorneys Charles S. Fax and Paul Mark Sandler solidified their standing among the nation’s most widely recognized authorities on civil discovery. In 2008, they pooled their 100+ years of collective experience in Maryland courts to publish Maryland Discovery Problems and Solutions, specifically for Maryland attorneys preparing cases in circuit courts across the state.  The result was a thoroughly researched and richly annotated analysis of the Maryland Rules of Procedure, Maryland case law and, where appropriate, discussion of analogous federal authorities, for use by Maryland lawyers to effectively plan and pursue discovery in Maryland courts. Extensive citations to relevant authority, case analysis, and thoughtful practice tips help the practitioner anticipate, spot, and resolve potential issues in all types of civil cases, making this an invaluable practice tool for every Maryland litigator. 

Updated for 2020, Maryland Discovery Problems and Solutions continues to offer the practitioner a comprehensive, yet practical guide to discovery covering the most  basic questions, such as how parts and subparts of interrogatories are counted toward the 30 question limit of Rule 2-421, to more complicated issues, such as those presented when a party seeks to discover electronically stored information (ESI), or materials subject to claims of privilege.  Maryland Discovery Problems and Solutions is designed to take the practitioner sequentially through every step in the process, from the day the complaint is filed or served through the use of discovery at trial. The authors provide insight essential to devising a plan to ensure maximum disclosure through the use of the right discovery tool at the right time.

Its 50 chapters, logically arranged and indexed with forms and sample documents make it easy to locate and focus on any discovery issue as it arises. The section on depositions, for example, includes 17 chapters that address issues ranging from the rudiments of the timing of and taking a deposition, to the intricacies of preserving objections, asserting privilege, and confronting misconduct. They also provide insight on expert, video, and remote depositions, deposing entities and foreign residents, and techniques for properly using deposition testimony under a variety of circumstances at trial.  This level of detail repeats in sections on interrogatories, document requests, requests for admission, and motions for mental and physical examinations; objections, motions to compel, and motions for sanctions and protective orders; and the discovery of all manner of communications with, and information used by, expert witnesses. The Second Edition also contains an entirely new discussion on approaching expert discovery in light of the Court of Appeals decision in  Rochkind v. Stevenson (No. 47, Sept. Term 2019) (8/28/20), which adopted the Daubert standard for the admissibility of expert testimony.   

The Second Edition also includes a new chapter, 9A, on the discovery of information from social networking sites. This chapter culminates in a series of practice tips for the Maryland lawyer that provide a step-by-step guide for use when discovery of social media and other ESI is sought. These include ways to assess risks that ESI might be lost or destroyed, to use discovery to learn how an adversary creates, files and saves ESI, to use assisted review to identify relevant or privileged information, or to resist unreasonably burdensome discovery requests served by an opponent.

Whether preparing for a routine personal injury case or one involving allegations of a multi-party trade secrets theft, Maryland Discovery Problems and Solutions, 2d ed.,   (MSBA 2020) is the most authoritative, practical and  comprehensive “how to” manual available to the Maryland practitioner.  Hard-copy and  electronic versions are available.