United States District Court, D. Rhode Island
KEVIN SOARES, individually and as Parent and Next Friend of LANDON R. SOARES-TEDROW, Plaintiff,
PROSPECT CHARTERCARE SJHSRI, LLC, et al., Defendants.
J. McConnell, Jr. United States District Judge.
years ago, the Rhode Island Supreme Court set forth
straightforward rules of conduct for counsel during
depositions. Kelvey v. Coughlin, 625 A.2d 775, 777
(R.I. 1993). Those rules remain as applicable and relevant
today as they were in 1993. The five Kelvey rules
1. Counsel for the deponent shall refrain from gratuitous
comments and directing the deponent in regard to times,
dates, documents, testimony, and the like.
2. Counsel shall refrain from cuing the deponent by objecting
in any manner other than stating an objection for the record
followed by a word or two describing the legal basis for the
3. Counsel shall refrain from directing the deponent not to
answer any questions submitted unless the question calls for
4. Counsel shall refrain from dialogue on the record during
the course of the deposition.
5. If counsel for any party or person given notice of the
deposition believes that these conditions are not being
adhered to, that counsel may call for suspension of the
deposition and then immediately apply to the court in which
the case is pending, or the court in which the case will be
brought, for an immediate ruling and remedy. Where
appropriate, sanctions should be considered.
Court believes that the Kelvey rules are entirely in
keeping with Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 30 and adopts them
as appropriate guidelines for conducting depositions in
federal court cases.
here moves to compel the deposition testimony of Defendants
McGreen and Wolfgang, arguing that certain objections made by
Defendants' counsel were improperly suggestive, and that
Defendants' counsel inappropriately instructed the
deponents not to answer certain questions.
motion points to several instances where Defendants'
counsel posed suggestive comments during an objection,
including the following:
Q. And, typically, Doctor, during your residency and your
fellowship, what kind of radiograph would be ordered if there
was a differential diagnosis of bowel ischemia?
DEFENDANTS' COUNSEL: Objection. If you remember back
then. Not talking about what ...