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I just got a subpoena (#2): Who pays for all this?
I thought of one more question. Documents subpoenaed from
the witness may cost hundreds of dollars to copy. Computer records are also being
demanded. Who bears the burden of this cost? Will the jury or other government entity do
so if requested?
|Response: The usual rule is that the subpoenaed party bears the
costs of complying, but you can sometimes persuade the government to share part of
the cost, although this only tends to be done in extraordinary cases. Usually, assumption
is that you dont HAVE to provide copies (with the attendant costs); you can simply
turn over all your original documents (or your only copies of them) to the government.
Even though this assumption is not realistic for anyone whose business records have been
subpoenaed, courts tend to accept it unless and until you can show that some unusual
circumstance warrants shifting at least part of the cost of complying to the government.
I said in my first email, you need to get a lawyer; your lawyer can talk to the
prosecutor, see if the prosecutor will give you a little more time in which to comply, and
see if the prosecutor is willing to make any arrangements about the cost of copying the