16 Rev. Litig. 303

Illinois Discovery Reform: A Rationale, Rules, and Result

Dale A. Cini and Richard J. Gray

This article highlights what Mr. Cini and Mr. Gray view to be most significant changes to the Rules governing civil discovery practice in Illinois in the Illinois Supreme Courtís January 1, 1996 amendment to the Rules. The new Illinois discovery Rules fall under two categories. First are the Rules that use a macromanagement approach; these rules are to focus discovery on the real issues in the case, so that discovery will enable a proper and efficient resolution of the issues. Rule 218 sets general requirements for case management. Rule 222 creates mandatory disclosure requirements. Second are Rules that address specific discovery abuses from a micromanagement approach. Rule 206(d) sets a three-hour limit on discovery depositions. Rule 206(c)(3) limits speaking objections during depositions. Rule 213 and 222(f)(1) limit the number of interrogatories to thirty. These Rules, along with others discussed in Mr. Cini and Mr. Grayís article, are part of a trend recognizing that discovery must become a more streamlined process. Since most civil cases are settled before trial, discovery can represent the major cost of dispute resolution. Without reform, we run the risk of having to abolish civil discovery because of the unacceptable cost of the system.

 

           
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