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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:Santa Fe Properties sued Atascosa Medical Associates LLPand two doctors, including Edward Elmer, for breach of a commercial lease. Santa Fe later added the two doctors, who were their own professional associations and partners in the limited liability partnership. Santa Fe was awarded a summary judgment against the partnership, and that claim was severed. Santa Fe was awarded damages equal to the lease payments due for the entire period remaining on the lease. Santa Fe later secured a partial summary judgment against Elmer’s professional association, making it liable as a partner in Atascosa. Santa Fe served interrogatories in aid of judgment on Elmer, who objected to them, because Santa Fe did not have a final judgment to enforce. The trial court ordered Elmer to answer the interrogatories. Elmer now seeks a writ of mandamus to vacate the trial court order. HOLDING:Writ conditionally granted. The court rejects Santa Fe’s interpretation of Texas Rule of Civil Procedure 621a, which Santa Fe says contains no requirement that a judgment be final prior to commencing discovery, only that there has been a “rendition of judgment.”. Though the rule does not use the phrase “final judgment,” the rule nonetheless contemplates that the judgment to be enforced has at least two characteristics. First, it must be of the type that it can be enforced; and to be enforced, it must be final. If a portion of the case remains, it is not final. Second, the judgment must be susceptible to being suspended by a supersedeas bond. To be susceptible, the judgment must be final and appealable. The court also notes that there would be no need for Rule 621a, unless it was intended to apply only to final judgments. The overall purpose of the rule expressly is to make pretrial discovery rules available to aid in the enforcement of a judgment. Pretrial discovery rules already exist for cases prior to final judgment. Rule 621a would not have been necessary unless the Supreme Court intended the phrase “rendition of judgment” necessarily to mean the rendition of a “final judgment.” OPINION:Phylis J. Speedlin, J.; Duncan, Marion and Speedlin, JJ.

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