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The Pennsylvania Code website reflects the Pennsylvania Code changes effective through 54 Pa.B. 1032 (February 24, 2024).

231 Pa. Code Rule 4011. Limitation of Scope of Discovery.

Rule 4011. Limitation of Scope of Discovery.

 No discovery, including discovery of electronically stored information, shall be permitted which

 (a)  is sought in bad faith;

 (b)  would cause unreasonable annoyance, embarrassment, oppression, burden or expense to the deponent or any person or party;

 (c)  is beyond the scope of discovery as set forth in Rules 4003.1 through 4003.6;

 (d)  is prohibited by any law barring disclosure of mediation communications and mediation documents; or

   Official Note

   Section 5949 of the Judicial Code, 43 Pa.C.S. §  5949, provides, with specified exceptions, that all mediation communications and mediation documents are privileged. See Section 5949(c) for definitions of mediation communication and mediation document.

 (e)  would require the making of an unreasonable investigation by the deponent or any party or witness.

   Official Note

   As with all other discovery rules, this rule governs electronically stored information. See the explanatory comment preceding Rule 4009.1.

Explanatory Note

   The amendments, as already pointed out, make two important changes in present Rule 4011. They delete subdivision (d) limiting the discovery of trial preparation material, and subdivision (f) forbidding any discovery which would require a deponent, whether or not a party, to give an opinion as an expert witness over his objection. These changes have already been discussed under Rules 4003.3 to 4003.5, supra. Minor stylistic changes have been made in subdivision (b). The provision protecting trade secrets or other confidential research, development, or commercial information has been transposed from subdivision (c) to Rule 4012(a)(9).


   The provisions of this Rule 4011 amended November 20, 1978, effective April 16, 1979, 8 Pa.B. 3551; amended March 5, 1997, effective July 1, 1997, 27 Pa.B. 1443; amended August 20, 2004, effective October 1, 2004, 34 Pa.B. 4881; amended June 6, 2012, effective August 1, 2012, 42 Pa.B. 3574. Immediately preceding text appears at serial page (305444).

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