Witness Subpoena and Records Subpoena Information Page
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What is a Witness Subpoena or Records Subpoena?
A Witness Subpoena by definition is a command to appear at a certain time and place to give testimony upon a certain matter. The term is from the Middle English suppena and the Latin phrase subpoena meaning "under penalty." The term may also be spelled "subpena."
A subpoena is an order requiring the attendance of the person named in the subpoena at a specified time and place for the purpose of being questioned under oath concerning a particular matter which is the subject of an investigation, proceeding, or lawsuit. A subpoena is issued by someone authorized by law, usually by the attorney for a party to a lawsuit, but very often issued by someone authorized to conduct an investigation such as the State Attorney General or local District Attorney.
In addition to requiring the attendance of a person, a subpoena may also require the production of a paper, document, or other object relevant to the particular investigation, proceeding, or lawsuit.
A subpoena will identify the person who issued the subpoena as well as the general nature of the proceeding to which it relates, although not necessarily the precise subject matter of the proceeding. If you are served with a subpoena, you cannot ignore it. If you do, you risk being held in contempt of court, even if the subpoena was not signed by a judge.
Deposition subpoenas differ from trial subpoena's in terms of whether the individual deposed can be compelled to travel. The question of fees for time expended at deposition or trial frequently becomes a point of disagreement between served people and attorneys. The law provides that a fact witness must be given a statutory dollar amount per day witness fee and payment by the mile traveling fee. However, the Civil Rules of Procedure provide that an expert or skilled witness is allowed a witness fee in whatever reasonable amount the Court may determine. Under this provision, the first question presented is, who qualifies as an expert or a smart witness? Often, slick attorneys, for example, will suggest that a treating doctor is no more than a fact witness and, therefore, not entitled to additional fees. However, this position is generally not accepted by the courts. They usually allow physicians, whether treating or hypothetical experts, an expert witness fee.
The correct spelling of Subpoena is SUBPOENA. Note, the O comes before the E. We have found most people whom we communicate with spell Subpoena wrong. The misspelled word appears as "Subpeona" whereby the E is incorrectly placed before the O. Be advised, [this way] Subpeona is spelled wrong. Spelling Subpoena this way is correct!