(a) Request; Scope. Any party may request any other party (1) to produce and permit the party making the request, or someone acting in the requesting party’s behalf, to inspect and copy any designated documents, including electronically stored information, writings, drawings, graphs, charts, photographs, phono-records, and other data compilations from which information can be obtained, translated, if necessary, by the party to whom the request is directed through detection devices into reasonably usable form, that constitute or contain matters within the scope of rule 1.280(b) and that are in the possession, custody, or control of the party to whom the request is directed; (2) to inspect and copy, test, or sample any tangible things that constitute or contain matters within the scope of rule 1.280(b) and that are in the possession, custody, or control of the party to whom the request is directed; or (3) to permit entry upon designated land or other property in the possession or control of the party upon whom the request is served for the purpose of inspection and measuring, surveying, photographing, testing, or sampling the property or any designated object or operation on it within the scope of rule 1.280(b).
(b) Procedure. Without leave of court the request may be served on the plaintiff after commencement of the action and on any other party with or after service of the process and initial pleading on that party. The request shall set forth the items to be inspected, either by individual item or category, and describe each item and category with reasonable particularity. The request shall specify a reasonable time, place, and manner of making the inspection or performing the related acts. The party to whom the request is directed shall serve a written response within 30 days after service of the request, except that a defendant may serve a response within 45 days after service of the process and initial pleading on that defendant. The court may allow a shorter or longer time. For each item or category the response shall state that inspection and related activities will be permitted as requested unless the request is objected to, in which event the reasons for the objection shall be stated. If an objection is made to part of an item or category, the part shall be specified. When producing documents, the producing party shall either produce them as they are kept in the usual course of business or shall identify them to correspond with the categories in the request. A request for electronically stored information may specify the form or forms in which electronically stored information is to be produced. If the responding party objects to a requested form, or if no form is specified in the request, the responding party must state the form or forms it intends to use. If a request for electronically stored information does not specify the form of production, the producing party must produce the information in a form or forms in which it is ordinarily maintained or in a reasonably usable form or forms. The party submitting the request may move for an order under rule 1.380 concerning any objection, failure to respond to the request, or any part of it, or failure to permit inspection as requested.
(c) Persons Not Parties. This rule does not preclude an independent action against a person not a party for production of documents and things and permission to enter upon land.
(d) Filing of Documents. Unless required by the court, a party shall not file any of the documents or things produced with the response. Documents or things may be filed in compliance with Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.425 and rule 1.280(g) when they should be considered by the court in determining a matter pending before the court.
1972 Amendment. Derived from Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 34 as amended in 1970. The new rule eliminates the good cause requirement of the former rule, changes the time for making the request and responding to it, and changes the procedure for the response. If no objection to the discovery is made, inspection is had without a court order. While the good cause requirement has been eliminated, the change is not intended to overrule cases limiting discovery under this rule to the scope of ordinary discovery, nor is it intended to overrule cases limiting unreasonable requests such as those reviewed in Van Devere v. Holmes, 156 So. 2d 899 (Fla. 3d DCA 1963); IBM v. Elder, 187 So. 2d 82 (Fla. 3d DCA 1966); and Miami v. Florida Public Service Commission, 226 So. 2d 217 (Fla. 1969). It is intended that the court review each objection and weigh the need for discovery and the likely results of it against the right of privacy of the party or witness or custodian.
1980 Amendment. Subdivision (b) is amended to require production of documents as they are kept in the usual course of business or in accordance with the categories in the request.
2011 Amendment. A reference to Florida Rule of Judicial Administration 2.425 and rule 1.280(f) is added to require persons filing discovery materials with the court to make sure that good cause exists prior to filing discovery materials and that certain specific personal information is redacted.
2012 Amendment. Subdivision (a) is amended to address the production of electronically stored information. Subdivision (b) is amended to set out a procedure for determining the form to be used in producing electronically stored information.