Don’t make your subpoena too broad.



Greenfield v Australian Rugby League Commission Ltd [2018] NSWSC 359 Supreme Court of New South Wales

Garling J

Contempt case, a subpoena was served by the plaintiff, a footballer who claimed against defendant for injuries allegedly arising from “a shoulder charge” in mid-2015.

The Plaintiff issued a subpoena to the defendant in proceedings, seeking ’very broad range’ of documents.

The plaintiff sought order under r33.12 Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 2005 (NSW), which provided that non-compliance with subpoena without lawful excuse was contempt of Court.

The plaintiff sought that defendant’s Proper Officer be brought before Court to make lawful excuse or be dealt with for contempt.

Held: Court did not have power to require Proper Officer’s attendance, because the subpoena’s broad width made it ’apt to be set aside’, the plaintiff had ’abandoned’ subpoena as neither party had complied with obligations under s56 Civil Procedures Act 2005 (NSW).

notice of motion dismissed – proceedings stood over.



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