Legal Question in Civil Litigation in California

In an Unlimited Civil (Defamation) case (against my H.O.A.,, for printing untrue statements about me in a newsletter), I served opposing counsel with Form Interrogatories about a month ago. They responded with very little info. Now I amended my complaint and added few newer causes of actions.

My 1st question (of 3) is: Since Im conducting Discovery, Do I have to serve them with another Form Interrogatories (re: amended complaint), or wait till they (if they want to) voluntarily supplement, or do I serve them with a Request for Supplement Answers. I know I couldve filed a motion to compel, but I just amended my complaint.

2nd question: (Re: Serving them), I live in Orange County (CA), and Defendants' counsel is in San Diego county, but they have branches all of over Southern California, and one here close to me in Orange County.

If I wanted to personally serve them with Discovery/Motions/etc. in person, would it be OK for me to serve Defendants' counsel's co-worker/lawyer (of the same law firm) in the law firm branch that is close to me (O.C.), or do I have to serve them in their other office in San Diego (where he works), which is about 200 miles farther from me.

3rd question: After I amend my complaint and filed it in court & got a court filed stamped Summons of First Amended Complaint (and the F.A.C. stamped)do I have to serve them on opposing counsel personally, or can I mail it to them first class.

Asked on 3/03/13, 4:12 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Jacob Kiani Law Office of Jacob I. Kiani

My friend, I'm just going to be honest with you. From what I read above, you have absolutely no idea what you are doing with regard to actually filing and serving a Complaint. It appears that you are also totally confused about basic discovery rules and best practices. It doesn't matter that you filed an amended Complaint. That doesn't provide you with some kind of extension to deal with discovery that you propounded. If they filed boilerplate objections to all of your written discovery requests (i.e. gave you none of the evidence you requested and will need to use need to prove your case at trial.1

If you then also failed to meet and confer on their deficient responses, and then also missed the deadline to move to compel first amended discovery responses, then it is clear that you don't know what you are doing, and you need to just STOP what are you doing right now.

You need to either drop this lawsuit or hire a lawyer to litigate the case properly. Right now you are not only wasting your time, you are probably going to end up costing yourself even more money when opposing counsel starts asking the judge to issue sanctions against you because you are not following the Court rules. The Judge does not treat, or at least is not supposed to treat, a defendant proceeding in pro per any different than he does an attorney.

Please realize that you are going down a dangerous path here, and that you need a good Attorney to protect you if you really believe you have to spend your life doing this.

Good luck,

Jacob I. Kiani, Esq.

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Answered on 3/03/13, 4:38 pm

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