In almost all civil litigation in California, a major issue is the formal process of exchanging information and documents that address claims or defenses in dispute between the parties. In this system, discovery is “self-executing.” That means that no party to the lawsuit has any obligation to provide any information, unless requested through the formal methods outlined in the Civil Discovery Act.
That is all potentially about to change. In 2024, next month, Code of Civil Procedure section 2016.090 will take effect. Recently, Governor Newsom signed Senate Bill 235 that amends two sections of the Code of Civil Procedure so that discovery in State Court becomes more like discovery in Federal Court. These experimental provisions, however, are set to last until January 1, 2027. (CCP § 2016.090(e).)