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Connecticut Law About Subpoenas
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Research Guides and Information

  Connecticut General Statutes

Definitions from the Connecticut Judicial Branch - Common Legal Words:

  • Subpoena: A command to appear in court to testify as a witness.
  • Subpoena Duces Tecum: A legal paper requiring someone to produce documents or records for a trial.

Court Forms from the Connecticut Judicial Branch:

Research Guides prepared by the Connecticut Judicial Branch law librarians:

Connecticut Guide to Remote Hearings (pdf):

  • Participating in a Remote Virtual Courtroom Hearing

IV. Preparing for the Hearing

F. Subpoenas

OLR Research Reports - Connecticut Office of Legislative Research:

    Pro Se Litigants - 2011-R-0488
    You asked whether (1) statutes and court rules prohibit pro se litigants from obtaining subpoenas to discover evidence in civil cases while allowing represented parties to obtain and issue subpoenas...

    Compelling Witnesses to Come to Court - 2008-R-0397
    You asked how civil court compel witnesses to testify and what expenses are reimbursed.

    Investigative Subpoenas - 2001-R-0201
    You asked about states that permit law enforcement officials to use investigative subpoenas to gather information in criminal investigations.

    Legislative Subpoena of Superior Court Judges - 2000-R-0761
    You asked whether the legislature could compel the attendance of a Superior Court judge at a legislative hearing.

    Pre-litigation Subpoenas - 1998-R-0957
    You asked when an attorney investigating whether or not to file a lawsuit can subpoena financial records of a potential defendant.

    Board of Parole - Subpoena Power - 1998-R-0378
    You asked whether the Board of Parole currently has subpoena power.

    Federal Prosecutors Investigative Subpoenas - 1998-R-0346
    You asked for a description of the investigative subpoena powers of federal prosecutors and the check on their use of that power. You also asked how these powers differ from civil and agency subpoena powers.

    Agencies Using Subpoena Powers - 1998-R-0259
    You asked us to indicate if agencies and other organizations and people with subpoena powers are using them.

    Agency Subpoena Powers - 1997-R-0041
    You asked for a list of the agencies that have subpoena power and a brief description of the power.

    Grand Juries and Investigative Subpoena Powers - 1996-R-1085
    You asked (1) for a summary of Connecticut and federal grand jury law, and RB 669, "An Act Granting Investigative Subpoena Powers"; (2) whether other states have investigative grand juries, and (3) whether any state or the federal government grants prosecutors the power to subpoena evidence or testimony independent of a grand jury's participation and before a crime has been charged.

    Subpoena Power - 1996-R-0654
    You asked us to update OLR 85-R-0992, which details who has subpoena power in Connecticut.

Library Materials

The Judicial Branch law libraries hold a number of items that may be helpful when researching subpoenas, witnesses, depositions and evidentiary law.  Search the online catalog for availability and locations.

  • A Practical Guide to Discovery and Depositions, by Susan Kim, et al.

  • Library of Connecticut Civil Discovery Forms, a Publication of the Connecticut Law Tribune

  • Connecticut Trial Evidence Notebook, by Dale Faulkner, et al. (see Capias entry)

  • Connecticut Medical Malpractice: a Manual of Practice and Procedure, by Joyce Lagnese et al.

  • Tait's Handbook of Connecticut Evidence 5th Edition, by Tait and Prescott

  • Connecticut Evidence, by Holden and Daly (see Section 122b Witnesses - Presence in Court)

Selected Statutes:

Chapter 899 - Evidence

  • Sec. 52-143 Subpoenas for witnesses. Penalty for failure to appear and testify.

  • Sec. 52-144 Form of subpoena.

  • Sec. 52-148e Issuance of subpoena for taking of deposition. Deposition to be used in federal court or court of other state or foreign country. Objection to subpoena.

  • Sec. 52-155 Depositions before commissioner appointed by other jurisdiction. Compulsory process for witnesses.

  • Sec. 52-161a Subpoenaing of court reporter as witness.

  • Sec. 52-161b Subpoenaing of crime victim by pro se litigant. Court authorization required.

Chapter 961 - Trial and Proceedings after Conviction

  • Sec. 54-82i (Formerly Sec. 54-22). Attendance of witnesses in criminal proceedings.

Click on the link to search the full-text of the statutes: https://search.cga.state.ct.us/r/statute/

Connecticut Practice Book

  • Sec. 7-19. Issuing subpoenas for witnesses on behalf of self-represented litigants

  • Sec. 13-28. Persons before whom deposition taken; Subpoenas

  • Sec. 15-4. Medical evidence

  • Sec. 24-22. Hearings in small claims actions; Subpoenas

  • Sec. 32a-2. Hearing procedure; Subpoenas

  • Sec. 40-2. Criminal Matters - Good faith efforts and subpoenas

  • Sec. 40-44. Criminal Matters - Depositions; grounds

Connecticut Case Law

  • Francis v. Commissioner of Correction (AC 34349, AC34449), 151 Conn. App. 574, 96 A.3d 597 (2014). "The court is granted broad discretion in issuing subpoenas for witnesses on behalf of self-represented parties."
  • Struckman v. Burns (13136), 205 Conn. 542, 534 A.2d 888 (1987). "While it is true that the defendant does not have the power by subpoena to force an out-of-state witness to travel to Connecticut for trial, General Statutes 52-148c allows a party to apply to the court for a commission to take the deposition of an out-of-state witness. Once the commission is granted by the court in this state, a subpoena can be obtained in the proposed deponent's state to force the deponent to attend a deposition in his state."

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