Virginia Discovery: Va. Sup. Ct. Rules 4:8 and 4:9 – a Lawyer’s Timing

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Virginia Supreme Court Rules 4:8 and 4:9 specify time deadlines – usually 21 but sometimes 28 days – for a party to object or to answer and produce. Thus, a failure to object on time maybe deemed a waiver of the objection, particularly in medical malpractice cases where counsel tend be more picayune.

Plaintiffs and Defendants alike have suffered waivers where they failed to object to Interrogatories and/or Responses for Production on time. See, e.g.Waterman v. Halverson, No. 26466-RW, Order at 2 (Newport News Sep. 21, 1999); Keeble v. Webb, No. L98-714, Order (Norfolk May 14, 1999); and Passmore v. Sentara Hosp.- Norfolk, No. L96-1641, Order (Norfolk Jun. 17, 1997). Passmore, a medical malpractice action, declares “by not filing objections to Plaintiff’s Request for Production of Documents within twenty-one (21) days after that discovery pleading was served, this Court is of the opinion that Sentara Hospitals – Norfolk has waived any objections….” See alsoGarner v. Sentara Gen. Hosp., No. CL00-1107, Order at 2 (Norfolk Feb. 12, 2001); and Jennings v. O’Shanick, No. LT2097-3, Order at 1 (Richmond Nov. 12, 1991).