Discovery in Contested Cases Hearing
(1)Discovery by the agency or any party may be permitted in appropriate contested cases at the discretion of the agency. Any party may petition the agency pursuant to the requirements in this rule for an order allowing discovery. Before requesting a discovery order, a party must seek the discovery through an informal exchange of information.
(2)Discovery may include but is not limited to one or more of the following methods:
(a)Depositions of a material witness;
(b)Disclosure of names and addresses of witnesses expected to testify at the hearing;
(c)Production of documents, which may but need not be limited to documents that the party producing the documents plans to offer as evidence;
(d)Production of objects for inspection;
(e)Permission to enter upon land to inspect land or other property;
(f)Requests for admissions;
(h)Prehearing conferences, as provided in OAR 137-003-0035 (Prehearing Conferences).
(3)Intentionally left blank —Ed.
(a)A party seeking to take the testimony of a material witness by deposition shall file a written request with the agency, with a copy to all other parties. The request must include the name and address of the witness, a showing of the materiality of the witness’s testimony, an explanation of why a deposition rather than informal or other means of discovery is necessary, and a request that the witness’s testimony be taken before an individual named in the request for the purpose of recording testimony.
(b)For all other forms of discovery, a request for a discovery order must be in writing and must include a description of the attempts to obtain the requested discovery informally. The request must be mailed or delivered to the agency, with a copy to other parties.
(4)Any discovery request must be reasonably likely to produce information that is generally relevant to the case. If the relevance of the requested discovery is not apparent, the agency may require the party requesting discovery to explain how the request is likely to produce relevant information. If the request appears to be unnecessary, the agency may require an explanation of why the requested information is necessary or is likely to facilitate resolution of the case.
(5)The agency may, but is not required to, authorize the requested discovery. In making its decision, the agency shall consider any objections by the party from whom the discovery is sought. The agency shall issue an order granting or denying a discovery request in whole or in part.
(6)If the agency does authorize discovery, the agency shall control the methods, timing and extent of discovery. The agency may limit discovery to a list of witnesses and the principal documents upon which the agency and parties will rely;
(7)Only the agency may issue subpoenas in support of discovery. The agency may apply to the circuit court to compel obedience to a subpoena.
(8)The agency may delegate to a presiding officer its authority to order and control discovery. The delegation must be in writing, and it may be limited to specified forms of discovery.
(9)The presiding officer may refuse to admit evidence that was not disclosed in response to a discovery order, unless the party that failed to provide discovery offers a satisfactory reason for having failed to do so, or unless excluding the evidence would violate the duty to conduct a full and fair inquiry under ORS 183.415 (Notice of right to hearing)(10). If the presiding officer admits evidence that was not disclosed as ordered, the presiding officer may grant a continuance to allow an opportunity for the agency or other party to respond.
Rule 137-003-0025 — Discovery in Contested Cases Hearing,