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Discovery - Judicial And Legislative Authority

inherent courts view

Early in our judicial history, courts took the view that they lacked authority to order discovery in criminal cases. That view generally persisted into this century, but it both changed and became less relevant after the 1930s as legislatures created discovery rights directly. That courts have inherent authority to order discovery is now widely accepted, but it has been rendered relatively unimportant as the result of enactment in most jurisdictions of comprehensive discovery legislation. Judicial discretion and inherent judicial authority are often significant but typically as supplementary and interstitial to a basic legislatively defined discovery system.

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