Effective Dec. 1, 2015, sweeping amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure narrow the scope of discovery, shorten key deadlines, and relax the standards for e-discovery sanctions. If you think these dramatic changes to the federal rules will not affect your practice because you rarely set foot in federal court, think again. The consistent trend is for changes in federal practice to influence Texas state court practice.

By far, the most dramatic change to the rules is the elimination of the long-standing phrase from rule 26(b): “Relevant information need not be admissible at trial if the discovery appears reasonably calculated to lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.” Discovery now hinges on a new guiding concept—proportionality.

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