Is a separate motion required for reopening discovery under CCP 2024.050. (a)? 1 Answers as of January 18, 2016

I had a request for order hearing set up for one specific different issue in a family law case. Discovery had been cutoff due to trial date having been set earlier but trial having been continued by court, discovery should be closed as specified in CCP 2024.020 (b). During the hearing for my issue, the other side simply requested reopening of discovery without it being a valid item for the motion in front of the court on that date. Is the judge allowed to legally rule in favor of discovery reopening in this manner as he did? Is the judge allowed to rule on a different issue that was not in front of the court on that date? As I read CCP 2024.050. (a) It says discovery may be reopened on motion of any party. Is it not correct that the judge cannot legally reopen discovery on that date simply because the other side asked for it during my hearing and that the opposing party must file a separate new motion to reopen discovery?

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It is difficult to be certain from the information provided, but it very much looks as though the Court considered the request by the opposing party as an oral motion. As the reopening of discovery is a procedural issue the court did have discretion to consider an oral motion. If the request was made during the same proceeding where the trial date was continued or the first appearance by the parties at Court after trial was continued by the Court on it's own, then it was completely appropriate to ask to re-open discovery at that time. Other than possibly causing further delay and cost what would you hope to gain by requiring the filing of a written motion? Unless there is a showing of undue prejudice these requests are granted the vast majority of the time. You should consult with an experienced legal counsel in your area as soon as possible.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/18/2016
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