Over the past two years, Schiff Hardin partner Neil Lloyd has written a series of articles for Bloomberg BNA’s US Law Week focused on ways to decrease clients’ legal spend by more efficiently managing complex litigation.  In the latest article, published January 13, 2015, Lloyd discusses two strategies for more efficiently handling depositions of organizations under Fed. R. Civ. P. 30(b)(6) (and the state equivalents for depositions of “persons most knowledgeable”).  See Refining and Then Sticking to the Topic:  Making Representative Party Depositions Under Fed. R. Civ. P. 30(b)(6) Fairer and More Efficient, 83 U.S.L.W. 1026 (01/13/15).

First, he recommends that parties receiving Rule 30(b)(6) notices take all necessary steps to refine the topics for the deposition before designating one or more witnesses who will be prepared to testify about those topics.  Too often, lawyers try to find the right witness before considering whether the topics themselves are even appropriate.  Second, once the topics have been refined, the defending lawyer should make sure that the deposition is confined as much as possible to topics for which the particular witness has been designated.  Examining lawyers will frequently try to question representative deponents as though they were ordinary fact witness, when in fact they were specifically designated and prepared to testify about particular topics.  Click here to read the article.