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Quick Tips if Served With a Subpoena

  1. Do not reveal any information to the person serving the subpoena.
  2. Look up agency’s policy and follow it! (If the policy does not answer your question, ask your supervisor).
  3. Make sure that management (e.g., Executive Director, supervisor) is aware of subpoena immediately.
  4. Read the subpoena:
    • To whom is it directed? The Program? An advocate?
    • Who is asking for the information
    • What are they asking for? Testimony? Document production?
    • Do you have the information? If so, how? if the requester is successful, what information will they get?
  5. What does the victim want?
    • Follow policy for notifying the victim. (This should be as soon as possible!) Don’t panic the victim.
    • Have a clear understanding of what the subpoena is asking for and what information your agency has so you can communicate it clearly to the victim.
    • If the victim wants to release the requested information, obtain informed consent and a signed written waiver for release of information.
  6. Document the facts:
    • When was the subpoena received? How was it served?
    • Document compliance with the policy (e.g., when the victim was contacted, etc.)
  7. Ask questions and seek help if you need it.
Reviewed: September 9th, 2015