John H. Beisner


This Article addresses the myriad problems posed by unfettered discovery in the United States Rather than promoting fairness and efficiency in the American legal system, plaintiffs today often use discovery in an abusive and vexatious manner to coerce defendants into accepting quick settlements Over the past several decades, discovery has expanded in both scope and magnitude such that discovery costs now account for at least half of the total litigation costs in any given case The advent of electronic discovery has only exacerbated the problem, given the sheer number of electronic documents generated in the course of business and the corresponding time, effort, and cost associated with electronic discovery Although recent efforts to amend the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure have failed to combat the abuses of civil discovery, meaningful and effective reform of the current system is possible This Article proposes a number of pragmatic reforms-including adopting the English rule for discovery disputes and suspending discovery during the pendency of a motion to dismiss-to mitigate the abusive and costly nature of discovery in the United States

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