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A subpoena is commonly defined as a written command to a person to testify before a court or be punished. More accurately, a subpoena is the conditional threat of punishment made by a governmental authority. It is attached to a command, so that if the recipient does not do as commanded then he may be punished. Subpoenas are associated with common law legal systems.
There are two common types of subpoenas:
- A subpoena ad testificandum orders a person to testify before the ordering authority or face punishment.
- A subpoena duces tecum orders a person to bring physical evidence before the ordering authority or face punishment.
Subpoena requirements vary widely within and between jurisdictions. Additionally, different private organizations may have specific requirements. The subpoena should specifically define the evidence sought without excluding significant information.
See also Edit
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