My question involves court procedures for the state of: Idaho
Pro se Plaintiff-counter defendant-third party defendant, vs defendants-counter
claimant and third party plaintiff, both represented by same counsel.
The case has proceeded to plaintiff/third party defendant serving discovery requests on
each : defendants and third party plaintiff.
Defendant answers to discovery requests were timely and satisfactory, signed under
oath, notarized by Attorney's assistant.
Third party answers were a different story. Answers were not timely.
Upon examination of the response, it was noticed that the attorney had notarized the
third party answers himself. The notarized signature of the third party is clearly a
digital image, not an original signature in ink.
Pretty clear fraudulent misconduct from my view. It raises doubt that the attorney even
has the authority of the third party to prosecute the complaint.
The question now is how to proceed. If there is a particular filing ordinarily used in
these situations which directly addresses the misconduct, I am unable to find a
reference to it.
I am considering the following:
1) Motion to compel.
Reasoning: Discovery response not signed by the person purported to be answering =
same value as no response.
The Motion would detail the false signature as justification and pray for appropriate
2) Motion to disqualify. I'm inclined to think a motion to disqualify due to
fraudulent conduct (since it could cause a party significant prejudice) could be used,
but such a motion seems to be used mostly where an attorney
has represented an adverse party previously, or where the attorney will be a witness.
I haven't been able so far to find an example where counsel has been disqualified from
representing parties in a pending action due to fraud, but I'm hoping it's a possibility.
I realize counsel disqualification is considered an extreme remedy and is disfavored.
An added point for this approach is that the interests of the defendants and the third
party in prosecuting their claims appear to conflict - discovery admissions obtained from
the defendants show this conflict.
I would appreciate useful information or comment.
There is no need to advise me to hire an attorney. I'm acutely aware of the benefit that