New York State Court of Appeals
Kapon, et al. v. Koch
Background: At issue is a subpoena by a party seeking discovery from a nonparty, the subpoenaing party’s notice obligation to a nonparty under the Civil Practice Law and Rules, and the witness’ burden when moving to quash the subpoena.
Ruling: The Court of Appeals held that the subpoenaing party must sufficiently state the circumstances or reasons underlying the subpoena and the witness must establish either that the discovery sought is utterly irrelevant to the action or that the futility of the process to uncover anything legitimate is inevitable or obvious. If the witness meets this burden, the subpoenaing party must establish that the discovery sought is material and necessary to the prosecution or defense of an action.
Paul Shechtman for the appellants; Moez Kaba for the respondent