- CURRENT AS OF: Jul 30th 2014
This Subpoena Guide covers generally applicable statewide rules of practice regarding subpoenas in Indiana trial courts. Local jurisdictions often have their own rules and procedures developed by judges and clerks that are not reduced to writing, and are subject to change at any time, especially regarding subpoenas to foreign witnesses and subpoenas for use in foreign actions. Therefore, it is always recommended that you consult the clerk's office for the court under whose authority the subpoena will be issued.
Plaintiff Must Wait Twenty (20) Days
Depositions may be taken by the defendant at any time after commencement of the action and by the plaintiff once twenty (20) days have passed since commencement of the action. The plaintiff need not wait twenty (20) days to notice or subpoena a deposition if the defendant has already done so or if the plaintiff is using rule authorized procedures to depose a party about to leave the state. IN RCP 30(A).
Notice - Reasonable Time
A party desiring to take the deposition of any person upon oral examination shall give reasonable notice in writing to every other party to the action. IN RCP 30(B)(1).
A motion to quash, modify or place conditions on compliance with a subpoena must be made promptly and in any event before the time for compliance. IN RCP 45(B).
Subpoenas may be issued, signed but otherwise in blank, by the clerk of court, and delivered to any party requesting the subpoena for completion and service. Alternatively, subpoenas may be issued and signed by an attorney of record in the action. IN RCP 45(A)(2); IN RCP 45(E).
Proof of service of a notice to take a deposition constitutes a sufficient authorization for the clerk's issuance of subpoenas for the persons named. IN RCP 45(D)(1).
A subpoena may be used to command appearance and testimony by deposition or at trial or hearing or to command production or permitted inspection and copying of designated books, documents or tangible things. IN RCP 45(A).
Subpoenas for production are subject to the limitations of Rule 26(B) as to scope of discovery generally. IN RCP 45(D)(1).
Deposition Subpoenas -- Indiana Residents
A state resident may be required to attend an examination only in the county wherein he or she resides or is employed or transacts his business in person, or at a convenient place fixed by court order. IN RCP 45(D)(2).
Deposition Subpoenas -- Non-Resident Defendants
A nonresident defendant may be required to attend an examination only in the state and county wherein he or she is served with a subpoena, or within forty  miles from the place of service, or at another convenient place fixed by court order. IN RCP 45(D)(2).
Deposition Subpoenas -- Non-Resident Plaintiffs
A non-resident plaintiff may be required to attend an examination at his or her own expense in the county where the action is commenced or in a county fixed by the court. IN RCP 45(D)(2).
Trial subpoenas may be served anywhere in the state. IN RCP 45(E).
On timely motion, the court by which a subpoena was issued will quash, modify or place reasonable conditions on the subpoena if it is unreasonable or oppressive. IN RCP 45(B).
Failure to obey a properly served subpoena constitutes contempt of the court unless the subpoenaed person has an adequate excuse for his or her non-compliance. IN RCP 45(F).
Action Pending Outside Indiana, Witness in Indiana
An Indiana court may order a person who is domiciled or is found in-state to give written or oral testimony or to produce documents or other things, allow inspections and copies and permit physical and mental examinations for use in a proceeding pending out-of-state. The order may be made upon the application of any interested person or in response to a letter rogatory and may prescribe the practice and procedure to be used, which may be wholly or in part the practice and procedure of the out of state court. The order may direct that testimony or statements be given, or documents or other thing produced, before a person appointed by the court. The person appointed must have power to administer any necessary oath. A person within Indiana may voluntarily give his testimony or statement or produce documents or other things allowing inspections and copies and permit physical and mental examinations for use in a proceeding before a tribunal outside Indiana. IN RCP 28(E).
Uniform Interstate Deposition and Discovery Act
Submit Foreign Subpoena to Clerk
To request issuance of a subpoena that is based on a foreign subpoena, a party must submit the foreign subpoena to the clerk of the court in the county in which discovery is sought to be conducted in Indiana. A request for the issuance of a subpoena under this chapter does not constitute an appearance in a court of this state. IN Code 34-44.5-1-6(a).
Clerk to Issue Subpoena
When a party submits a foreign subpoena to the clerk of a court in Indiana, the clerk, in accordance with the court's procedure, shall promptly issue a subpoena for service upon the person to which the foreign subpoena is directed. IN Code 34-44.5-1-6(a).
A subpoena must incorporate the terms used in the foreign subpoena; and contain or be accompanied by the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of all counsel of record in the proceeding to which the subpoena relates and any party not represented by counsel. IN Code 34-44.5-1-6(c).
Serve Foreign Subpoena According to Indiana Law
A subpoena issued by a clerk of the court under section 6 of this chapter must be served in compliance with all applicable laws concerning service of a subpoena in Indiana. IN Code 34-44.5-1-7.
Application for Protective Order
An application to a court for a protective order or to enforce, quash, or modify a subpoena issued by a clerk of court under section 6 of this chapter must comply with all applicable Indiana laws; and be submitted to a court in the county in which discovery is to be conducted. IN Code 34-44.5-1-7.
Subpoenas must state the name of the court, the first named party on each side of the case and the case number, and may command the subpoenaed person to appear and give testimony at a specified time and place. IN RCP 45(A)(1).
A subpoena may command the person to whom it is directed to produce designated books, papers, documents or tangible things. IN RCP 45(B).
The fee schedule is not available online at this time. Contact the court at 317-232-1930 for current information on subpoena issuance fees.
Unless the subpoena is at issue in a discovery dispute or contempt proceeding, subpoenas customarily are not filed with the court.
Service of a deposition or production subpoena is made by delivery pursuant to the rules for service of process generally by a sheriff, deputy or any party or person. IN RCP 45(C).
Service of a trial subpoena is made by delivering a copy to the subpoenaed person who will be required to attend outside his county of residence as provided in section (C), and by tendering the fees for one day's attendance and the mileage allowed by law. Such tender is not required to be made to a party. IN RCP 45(G).
When a subpoena is served by the sheriff or deputy, the sheriff's return constitutes proof of service. When a subpoena is served by any other person, the service must be shown by affidavit. No fees or costs for the service of a subpoena should be collected or charged as costs except when service is made by the sheriff or his deputy. IN RCP 45(H).
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