Lyons v. Lyons

Lyons v. Lyons: 162 So. 3d 212 (Fla. 4th DCA 2015), 2015 WL 543106

While this opinion came about because of a trust contest among family members, the decision relates to broader principles of discovery relevant for all litigators.  The case centered around a privilege objection to the production of documents from the trust accountant, a nonparty, pursuant to Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.351.  The Court held that under the amended Rule 1.351, an objection does not automatically trigger a deposition pursuant to Rule 1.310, and instead, the court has the ability to rule on the objection.  A court is required to rule on any claim of privilege, and should conduct an in camera inspection prior to production of the privileged documents.  The trial court has discretion to fashion the process to deal with the production of documents, and here, where the trial court entered an order providing a procedure for the accountant to gather the documents, for review of the documents, and for an in camera review of the documents claimed to be privilege, the Appellate Court found the trial court's procedure sufficient to protect the privileged documents. 


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