As I pointed out yesterday, interrogatories should always include questions about people who have knowledge of the lawsuit's claims and defenses. In the absence of court-approved pattern interrogatories, how should you draft such an interrogatory?
In complex cases, you can request information in two ways: in a broad, general way, and also directed towards specific topics. Following is a sample interrogatory from a class action against a phone company that can easily be modified for use in other cases.
[Below the Fold: Sample Interrogatory]
For each of the following listed topics, please identify* all persons who have knowledge of such topics, stating briefly their relationship to the defendant:
a. Facts pertaining to the allegations of the complaint;
b. Facts pertaining to the defendant's defenses and affirmative defenses;
a. The actual circumstances under which persons are offered directory assistance completion service (DACS).
c. The genesis, development, testing, implementation, and/or evolution of DACS.
d. Any studies analyses, assessments, and/or forecasts prepared by [phone company] regarding DACS.
e. The genesis, drafting, developments and evolution of the language in [phone company's] tariffs (including any drafts thereof) pursuant to which [phone company] implemented and has continued to execute its DACS.
f. The consent of a person to use DACS, including all versions of the recorded message concerning DACS that is played to callers.
g. The number of customers who used DACS to complete phone calls.
h. The involvement of [phone company] in completing calls from Illinois in which the phone customer used DACS.
i. The revenues, earnings, profits, losses, or billings relating to and/or derived from DACS.
j. The actual or projected cost to [phone company] of providing and billing for DACS.
k. Investigations by state or federal authorities or agencies concerning DACS.
*"Identify" is a term that can be defined in the "definitions" section of the interrogatories to mean stating the person's name, last known address, phone number, etc.