What is a Request for Admission?

What is a Request for Admission?

If you are involved in a civil lawsuit, you will likely be served with at least one set of written discovery requests. These will probably contain a series of interrogatories, which will ask you to provide written answers to various questions related to the lawsuit, and requests for production of documents and other things, which will ask you to provide copies of documents that have information that could be related to the lawsuit. Both of these types of discovery requests are fairly easy to understand – the opposing party wants information about the lawsuit and is asking you to provide it. Sometimes, however, you may also be asked to answer requests for admission. This discovery tool can be a little more difficult to understand what is being asked of you, or what the purpose of your responses will be.

A request for admission is a written discovery tool that asks the answering party to admit the truth of particular statements. The admission of these statements is only for purposes of the litigation in which the request for admission is being served. The statements may involve any discoverable information that relates to either the facts, the application of law to facts, or the answering party’s opinion about the facts or the application of law to the facts. They may also ask the answering party to admit that certain documents are genuine.

The purpose of requests for admission is to help narrow the scope of the case and determine what facts or aspects of the case are not in dispute between the parties. This is important for two primary reasons. The first reason is to try and establish proof of important and essential aspects of the case. The second purpose of requests for admission is to help eliminate issues that are not a part of the case. The parties will spend a good deal of time and some money doing discovery to try and obtain as much information as possible about their case, and if there is an agreement about certain elements of the case, then less effort will be necessary to get to the bottom of that element and place evidence before the court on that issue. For example, if the lawsuit is about a collision where a semi-truck hit a passenger car, one issue that the plaintiff may want to explore in discovery is the driver’s employment with the trucking company. If the defendant company or driver will admit that, at the time of the collision, the driver was employed by the trucking company, and was driving for the trucking company as part of his job, then less efforts will need to be taken to establish and prove the employment relationship. Requests for admission also help the court by reducing the amount of evidence that the court will need to rule upon whether it may be admitted at trial.

Your attorney will help you properly respond to any requests for admission that were served on you, and can explain to you the purpose of serving any requests for admission in your case on the opposing parties. 

*Image courtesy of Pixabay

Today's blog: We break down the meaning and purpose of a common legal phrase known as a "request for admission" which attorneys help to facilitate should any be served on you.