Apex Doctrine – S.B. 74


Georgia – 2023

Includes language commonly referred to as the apex doctrine, which provides for certain criteria required to secure the deposition of certain high ranking public and corporate employees.  The legislation defines a “high-ranking officer” as someone who is or has been a high-ranking officer of any large governmental entity or large corporation.  A high-ranking official may demonstrate good cause for a protective order by showing they had no unique personal knowledge of any matter relevant to the subject matter involved in the underlying action.  When the party seeking discovery has exhausted other reasonable means of discovery and the discovery is deemed inaccurate, good cause will not be considered sufficiently demonstrated.  Finally, the court will have the ability to limit the scope of the deposition when a high-ranking officer lacks only some unique personal knowledge as it relates to the underlying litigation.

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