Case of the Day: In re Request for International Judicial Assistance
Posted on April 3, 2014
The case of the day is In re Request for International Judicial Assistance from the Sixteenth Family Court of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Federal District (N.D. Cal. 2014). In connection with divorce proceedings in Mexico, a Mexican family court sent a letter rogatory, apparently through the diplomatic channel, to the United States seeking relevant bank records from a Bank of America branch in San Francisco.
The US Attorney brought an ex parte application under § 1782, which the court granted without much fuss. The only reason I bring the case up is that in light of a foreign litigant’s ability to seek evidence in the United States directly under § 1782, and (in the criminal context) in light of the use of MLATs, it seems less and less usual to see an actual letter rogatory directed into the United States. If you’re curious about what an example from Mexico looks like, check out the exhibits to the government’s submission.