39 CFR 958.12 - Depositions; interrogatories; admission of facts; production and inspection of documents.
(a) General policy and protective orders. The parties are encouraged to engage in voluntary discovery procedures. In connection with any discovery procedure permitted under this part, the Presiding Officer may issue any order which justice requires to protect a party or person from annoyance, embarrassment, oppression, or undue burden or expense. Such orders may include limitations on the scope, method, time and place for discovery, and provisions for protecting the secrecy of confidential information or documents. Each party shall bear its own expenses relating to discovery.
(b) Depositions. After the issuance of a Notice of Docketing and Hearing, the parties may mutually agree to, or the Presiding Officer may, upon application of either party and for good cause shown, order the taking of testimony of any person by deposition upon oral examination or written interrogatories before any officer authorized to administer oaths at the place of examination, for use as evidence or for purposes of discovery. The application for an order of the Presiding Officer under this paragraph shall specify whether the purpose of the deposition is discovery or for use as evidence.
(1) The time, place, and manner of taking depositions shall be as mutually agreed by the parties, or failing such agreement, governed by order of the Presiding Officer.
(2) No testimony taken by depositions shall be considered as part of the record in the hearing unless and until such testimony is offered and received into evidence by order of the Presiding Officer. Deposition testimony will not ordinarily be received in evidence if an oral hearing is requested by either party, and the deponent is available to testify personally at the hearing. In such instances, however, deposition testimony may be used to contradict or impeach the testimony of the witness given at the hearing. In cases submitted for a decision on a written record, the Presiding Officer may, in his or her discretion, receive deposition testimony as evidence in supplementation of that record.
(c) Interrogatories to parties. After the issuance of a Notice of Docketing and Hearing, a party may serve on the other party written interrogatories. Within 30 days after service, the party served shall answer each interrogatory separately in writing, signed under oath, or file objections thereto. Upon timely objection by the party, the Presiding Officer will determine the extent to which the interrogatories will be permitted.
(d) Admission of facts. After the issuance of a Notice of Docketing and Hearing, a party may serve upon the other party a request for the admission of specified facts. Within 30 days after service, the party served shall answer each requested fact or file objections thereto. Upon timely objection by the party, the Presiding Officer will determine the extent to which the request for admission will be permitted. The factual propositions set out in the request shall be deemed admitted upon the failure of a party to respond to the request for admission.
(e) Production and inspection of documents. Upon motion of a party showing good cause therefor, and upon notice, the Presiding Officer may order the other party to produce and permit the inspection and copying or photographing of any designated documents or objects, not privileged, specifically identified, and their relevance and materiality to the cause or causes in issue explained, which are reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery or admissible evidence. If the parties cannot themselves agree thereon, the Presiding Officer shall specify just terms and conditions in making the inspection and taking the copies and photographs.
(f) Limitations. A discovery procedure may not be used to reach documents, transcripts, records, or other material which a person is not entitled to review pursuant to § 958.11.