RULE 30. DEPOSITIONS
depositions a Deposition May Be Taken.
(1) Without Leave. After commencement of the action,
a party may take the testimony
of , by oral questions, depose any person, including a party, by
deposition upon oral
examination except as provided in Rule 30 (a)(2). The deponent's
attendance may be
compelled by subpoena under Rule 45.
(2) With Leave.
(A) By Plaintiff. The plaintiff must obtain leave of court, granted with or without
must be obtained only if the plaintiff seeks to take a deposition prior to the
thirty less than 30 days after service of the summons and complaint
upon any on a defendant
or service made under Rule 4(e) , but leave . Leave is not required
(1) if (i) a defendant has served a deposition notice
of taking depositions or otherwise
sought discovery , ; or
(2) if (ii) special notice is given as provided in
subdivision under Rule 30(b)( 2 7).
The attendance of witnesses may be compelled by subpoena as provided in Rule
(B) Of Prisoner.
The A party must obtain leave of court to
take the deposition of a person
confined in prison may be taken only by leave of court on such terms as the court
The court may specify terms for the deposition.
(3) Court's Discretion. The court for cause shown may enlarge or shorten the time for taking the deposition. The court may regulate at its discretion the time and order of taking depositions as will best serve the convenience of the parties and witnesses and the interests of justice.
(b) Notice of
examination-General requirements-Special notice-Non-stenographic
recording-Production of documents and things-Deposition of organization-Deposition by
telephone the Deposition; Other Formal Requirements.
(1) Notice in General. A party
desiring to take the deposition of
any who wants to depose
a person upon oral examination shall by oral questions must give
reasonable written notice
in writing to every other party to the action. The notice must
state the time and place for
taking of the deposition and, if known, the deponent's name
and address of each person to
be examined, if known, and, if . If the name is not known,
unknown, the notice must provide
a general description sufficient to identify the person or the particular class or group to which
the person belongs.
(2) Producing Documents. If a subpoena duces tecum is to be served on the
person to be
examined, the description of the material to be produced as set forth in the subpoena must
be attached to or included deponent, the materials designated for production, as set
out in the
subpoena, must be listed in the notice or in an attachment. The notice to a party
may be accompanied by a request complying with Rule 34 to produce documents and
tangible things at the deposition.
(3) Method of Recording.
(A) Method Stated in the Notice. The party who notices the deposition must state in the notice the method for recording the testimony. Unless the court orders otherwise, testimony may be recorded by audio, audiovisual, or stenographic means. The noticing party bears the recording costs. Any party may arrange to transcribe a deposition.
(B) Additional Method. With prior notice to the deponent and other parties, any party may designate another method for recording the testimony in addition to that specified in the original notice. That party bears the expense of the additional record or transcript unless the court orders otherwise.
(4) By Remote Means. The parties may stipulate or the court may on motion order that a deposition be taken by telephone or other remote means. For the purpose of this rule and Rules 28(a), 37(a)(2), and 37(b)(1), the deposition takes place where the deponent answers the questions.
(5) Officer's Duties.
(A) Before the Deposition. Unless the parties stipulate otherwise, a deposition must be conducted before an officer appointed or designated under Rule 28. The officer must begin the deposition with an on-the-record statement that includes:
(i) the officer's name and business address;
(ii) the date, time, and place of the deposition;
(iii) the deponent's name;
(iv) the officer's administration of the oath or affirmation to the deponent; and
(v) the identity of all persons present.
(B) Conducting the Deposition; Avoiding Distortion. If the deposition is recorded nonstenographically, the officer must repeat the items in Rule 30(b)(5)(A)(i)-(iii) at the beginning of each unit of the recording medium. The deponent's and attorneys' appearance or demeanor must not be distorted through recording techniques.
(C) After the Deposition. At the end of a deposition, the officer must state on the record that the deposition is complete and must set out any stipulations made by the attorneys about custody of the transcript or recording and of the exhibits, or about any other pertinent matters.
(6) Notice or Subpoena Directed to an Organization. In its notice or subpoena, a party may name as the deponent a public or private corporation, a partnership, an association, a governmental agency, or other entity and must describe with reasonable particularity the matters for examination. The named organization must then designate one or more officers, directors, or managing agents, or designate other persons who consent to testify on its behalf; and it may set out the matters on which each person designated will testify. A subpoena must advise a nonparty organization of its duty to make this designation. The persons designated must testify about information known or reasonably available to the organization. This paragraph (6) does not preclude a deposition by any other procedure allowed by these rules.
(2) (7) Special Notice. Leave A plaintiff
seeking to depose a person is not required to obtain
leave of court is not required for the taking of a deposition by plaintiff
30(a)(2)(A) if the deposition notice:
(A) states that the
person to be examined deponent is about to
go out of this leave the state
and will be unavailable for examination unless the a deposition
unless it is taken before
expiration of the thirty-day 30-day period ,
(B) sets forth facts to support the statement
. ; and
The is signed by the plaintiff's attorney
shall sign the notice. The attorney's signature
constitutes a certification that to the best of the attorney's knowledge, information, and belief
the statement and supporting facts are true. The sanctions provided by Rule 11 apply to the
If a party shows that, when the party was served with a special
subdivision (b)(2) the party was unable through the exercise of diligence to obtain
to represent the party at the taking of the deposition, the deposition may not be
(3) The court for cause shown may enlarge or shorten the time for taking the
The court may regulate at its discretion the time and order of taking depositions as will best
serve the convenience of the parties and witnesses and the interests of justice.
(4) The court upon motion may order that the testimony at a deposition be recorded
other than stenographic or audio-visual means, in which event the order must designate the
manner of recording, preserving, and filing the deposition, and may include other provisions
to assure that the recorded testimony will be accurate and trustworthy. If the order is made,
a party may nevertheless arrange to have a stenographic transcription made at the party's
own expense. Any objections under subdivision (c), any changes made by the witness, the
witness' signature identifying the depositions as the witness' own or the statement of the
officer that is required if the witness does not sign, as provided in subdivision (e), and the
certification of the officer required by subdivision (f) must be set forth in writing to
accompany a deposition recorded by non-stenographic means.
(5) The notice to a party deponent may be accompanied by a request made in
with Rule 34 for the production of documents and tangible things at the taking of the
deposition. The procedure of Rule 34 applies to the request.
(6) In the party's notice and in a subpoena, a party may name as the deponent a
private corporation or a partnership or association or governmental agency and describe with
reasonable particularity the matters on which examination is requested. In that event, the
organization so named must designate one or more officers, directors, or managing agents,
or other persons who consent to testify on its behalf, and may set forth, for each person
designated, the matters on which the person will testify. A subpoena must advise a nonparty
organization of its duty to make such a designation. A person so designated shall testify as
to matters known or reasonably available to the organization. This subdivision does not
preclude taking a deposition by any other procedure authorized in these rules.
(7) The parties may stipulate in writing or the court upon motion may order that a
deposition be taken by telephone. For the purposes of this rule and Rules 28(a), 37(a)(1),
37(b)(1) and 45(d), a deposition taken by telephone is taken in the district and at the place
where the deponent is to answer propounded questions.
(c) Examination and Cross-examination
-; Record of the
Examination -; Oath-Objections;
(1) Examination and Cross-Examination.
examination and cross-examination of witnesses may a deponent
proceed as permitted at the they would at trial
under the North Dakota Rules of Evidence. The After putting the deponent
under oath or
affirmation, the officer before whom the deposition is to be taken shall put the
oath and personally, or by someone acting under the officer's direction and in the officer's
presence, shall must record the testimony of the witness. The
testimony must be taken
stenographically or recorded by audio-visual means or any other means ordered in
accordance with subdivision (b)(4) by the method designated under Rule
requested by one of the parties, the testimony must be transcribed. The court may order the
cost of transcription paid by one or some of, or apportioned among, the parties.
All objections made An objection at the
time of the examination to the
qualifications of the officer taking the deposition, or to the manner of taking it, or to the
evidence presented, or to the conduct of any party, and any other objections to the
proceedings, whether to evidence, to a party's conduct, to the officer's
the manner of taking the deposition, or to any other aspect of the deposition
must be noted
by the officer upon the deposition. Evidence objected to must be on the
record, but the
examination still proceeds; the testimony is taken subject to the objections
any objection. An
objection must be stated concisely in a nonargumentative and nonsuggestive manner. A
person may instruct a deponent not to answer only when necessary to preserve a privilege,
to enforce a limitation ordered by the court, or to present a motion under Rule 30(d)(3).
(3) Participating Through Written Questions.
Instead of participating in the oral
examination, parties a party may serve written questions in a sealed
envelope on the party
taking noticing the deposition, and the party taking
the deposition shall transmit who must
deliver them to the officer , who shall propound them to the witness.
The officer must ask the
deponent those questions and record the answers verbatim.
(d) Duration; Sanction; Motion to Terminate or Limit
(1) Duration. Unless otherwise stipulated or ordered by the court, a deposition is limited to one day of seven hours. The court must allow additional time consistent with Rule 26 if needed to fairly examine the deponent or if the deponent, another person, or any other circumstance impedes or delays the examination.
(2) Sanction. The court may impose an appropriate sanction including the reasonable expenses and attorney's fees incurred by any party on a person who impedes, delays, or frustrates the fair examination of the deponent.
(3) Motion to Terminate or Limit.
(A) Grounds. At any time during
the taking of the a
deposition, on motion of the deponent
or a party or of the deponent and upon a showing that the examination
may move to
terminate it on the ground that it is being conducted in bad faith or in such
a manner as that
unreasonably to annoy, embarrass, or oppress annoys, embarrasses, or
deponent or party ,. The motion may be filed in the court
in which where the action is
pending or the court in the district where the deposition is being taken. If
deponent or party so demands, the deposition must be suspended for the time necessary to
obtain an order.
(B) Order. The court may order
the officer conducting the examination to
from taking the deposition, that the deposition be terminated or may limit
the its scope and
manner of the taking of the deposition as provided in Rule 26(c). If the
terminates the examination, it terminated, the deposition may be resumed
upon the only by order of the court in which where
the action is pending. Upon demand of
the objecting party or deponent, the taking of the deposition must be suspended for the time
necessary to make a motion for an order.
(C) Award of Expenses.
The provisions of Rule 37 (a)(4)
apply applies to the award of
expenses incurred in relation to the motion.
Submission to Review by Witness -;
(1) Review; Statement of Changes.
When the testimony is fully
transcribed, the deposition
must be submitted to the witness for examination and must be read to or by the witness,
unless the examination and reading are waived by the witness and by the parties.On
by the deponent or a party before the deposition is completed, must be allowed 30 days after
being notified by the officer that the transcript or recording is available in which:
(A) to review the transcript or recording; and
Any if there are changes in form or substance
which the witness desires to make must
be entered upon the deposition by the officer with, to sign a statement
of listing the changes
and the reasons given by the witness for making them. The
deposition must then be signed
by the witness, unless the parties by stipulation waive the signing or the witness is ill or
cannot be found or refuses to sign. If the deposition is not signed by the witness within 30
days after its submission to the witness, the officer shall sign it and state on the record the
fact of the waiver or of the illness or absence of the witness or the fact of the refusal to sign
together with the reason, if any, given therefor; and the deposition may then be used as fully
as though signed unless on a motion to suppress under Rule 32(d)(4) the court holds the
reasons given for the refusal to sign require rejection of the deposition in whole or in
(2) Changes Indicated in the Officer's Certificate. The officer must note in the certificate prescribed by Rule 30(f)(1) whether a review was requested and, if so, must attach any changes the deponent makes during the 30-day period.
(f) Certification and Delivery; Exhibits; Copies of the Transcript or Recording; Filing.
(1) Certification and Delivery. The officer
certify on the deposition in writing
that the witness was duly sworn by the officer and that the
deposition is a true record of
accurately records the witness's testimony given by the
witness. The certificate must
accompany the record of the deposition. Unless the court orders otherwise
ordered by the
court, the officer shall securely must seal the original
transcript of the deposition in an
envelope indorsed with or package bearing the title of the action and
of (here insert name of witness) [witness's name]" and
shall must promptly deliver or send
the transcript it by registered or certified mail or a traceable third-party
service to the party noticing the deposition, who must be identified on the
record or attorney
who arranged for the transcript or recording. The party or attorney must store it under
conditions that will protect it against loss, destruction, tampering, or deterioration.
(2) Documents and Tangible Things.
(A) Originals and Copies. Documents and tangible things produced for
the examination of the witness, upon the a deposition must, on a
party's request of a party,
must be marked for identification and annexed
attached to the deposition , and may be
inspected and copied by any. Any party may inspect and copy
them , but if. If the person
producing the materials desires to retain them who produced them wants to
originals, the person may:
A i) offer copies to be marked for identification and
annexed, attached to the deposition,
and to serve thereafter then used as originals if the person
affords to after giving all parties
a fair opportunity to verify the copies by comparison comparing
them with the originals ,; or
B ii) offer the originals to be marked for identification,
after giving to each party an give
all parties a fair opportunity to inspect and copy them, the originals
in which event the
materials may then be used in the same manner as if annexed originals may
be used as if
attached to the deposition.
(B) Order Regarding the Originals. Any party may move for an order that the
annexed to and returned with the deposition to the person noticing originals be
the deposition , pending final disposition of the case.
2 3) Upon payment of reasonable charges therefor, the
officer shall furnish a copy of the
deposition to any party or to the deponent. Unless otherwise stipulated or ordered
court, the officer must retain the stenographic notes of a deposition taken stenographically
or a copy of the recording of a deposition taken by another method. When paid reasonable
charges, the officer must furnish a copy of the transcript or recording to any party or the
(g) Failure to Attend a Deposition or
to Serve a
Subpoena -; Expenses.
(1) If a party giving notice of the taking of a deposition fails to attend and proceed
therewith and another party attends in person or by attorney pursuant to the notice, the court
may order the party giving the notice to pay to the other party the reasonable expenses
incurred by that party and that party's attorney in attending, including reasonable attorney's
(2) If the party giving the notice of the taking of a deposition of a witness fails to
subpoena upon the witness and because of the failure the witness does not attend and another
party attends in person or by attorney because that party expects the deposition of that
witness to be taken, the court may order the party giving the notice to pay to the other party
the reasonable expenses incurred by that party and that party's attorney in attending,
including reasonable attorney's fees.
A party who, expecting a deposition to be taken, attends in person or by an attorney may recover reasonable expenses for attending, including attorney's fees, if the noticing party failed to:
(1) attend and proceed with the deposition; or
(2) serve a subpoena on a nonparty deponent, who consequently did not attend.
Rule 30 was amended, effective January 1, 1980; July 1, 1981; March 1, 1986; March 1, 1990; March 1, 1999; March 1, 2000.
Rule 30 was amended, effective March 1, 1999, to allow an original deposition transcript to be shipped via a commercial delivery service offering a traceable means of shipping similar to registered or certified mail.
Rule 30 was amended, effective _______________, in response to the December 1, 2007, revision of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. The language and organization of the rule were changed to make the rule more easily understood and to make style and terminology consistent throughout the rules.
Subdivision (e) was amended, effective _________________, to eliminate the requirement that the deponent review and sign the deposition. Instead, a deponent or party may review the deposition and submit a statement of changes on request.
Sources: Joint Procedure Committee Minutes of ___________________;
1998, page 16; January 29-30, 1998, page 19; April 27-28, 1995, pages 5-7; April 20, 1989,
page 2; December 3, 1987, page 11; November 30, 1984, pages 27-29; October 18, 1984,
page 11; December 11-12, 1980, pages 1, 5-6; October 30-31, 1980, pages 11-16; November
29-30, 1979, pages 5-6; April 26-27, 1979, pages 9-14;
Fed.R.Civ.P. 30 , FRCivP.
Superseded: N.D.R.C. 1943 §§ 31-0507, 31-0509, 31-0511, 31-0512,
31-0513, 31-0514, 31-0515, 31-0516, 31-0517, 31-0520, 31-0521, 31-0707, 31-0708, 31-0710,
Rules N.D.R.Civ.P. 4 (Persons Subject to
Jurisdiction - Process -
Service), N.D.R.Civ.P. 26 (General Provisions Governing Discovery),
(Depositions Before Action or Pending Appeal), N.D.R.Civ.P. 28 (Persons Before
Depositions May be Taken), N.D.R.Civ.P. 29 (Stipulations Regarding Discovery
N.D.R.Civ.P. 31 (Depositions of Witnesses Upon Written Questions),
N.D.R.Civ.P. 32 (Use
of Depositions in Court Proceedings), N.D.R.Civ.P. 34 (Production of Documents and
Things and Entry Upon Land for Inspection and Other Purposes), N.D.R.Civ.P. 37
to Make Discovery - Sanctions), and N.D.R.Civ.P. 45 (Subpoena),
N.D.R.Ev. 611 (Mode and Order of Interrogation and Presentation) ,