The Office of Legal Affairs can assist you with Contracts, Open Records, Subpoenas, Discoveries, and more. While we cannot provide legal advice or services to students, staff, or faculty, please do not hesitate to contact the Office of Legal Affairs for help with the following:
The Office of Legal Affairs assists university departments and administrators with many types of contracts. Services we provide include drafting and reviewing new contracts, assisting with or participating in contract negotiations, and interpreting existing contracts. Faculty and staff should not sign or enter into contracts to which the university will be a party without first seeking legal review of the contract.
The University Counsel serves as the University’s custodian of records for purposes of complying with the Georgia Open Records Act. If you are requesting access to records pursuant to the Georgia Open Records Act, please contact the Office of Legal Affairs. For your convenience, you may submit your request to us at firstname.lastname@example.org .
The Georgia Open Records Act requires persons requesting access to records to compensate the University for the reasonable and necessary costs of compiling, accessing, assembling, or copying records in response to a request.
If you or your office or department receives a request for access to records under the Georgia Open Records Act (whether or not such a request is in writing, and whether or not it specifically refers to the Act), please contact the Office of Legal Affairs right away. Because the response times allowed under the Act are short, it is important that we begin work on responses as quickly as possible.
If your office or department receives a subpoena, please contact the Office of Legal Affairs right away.
A subpoena is an order issued by or on behalf of a court of law ordering a person to appear in court or in some other location at a particular time. A subpoena may be issued by a judge, by a clerk of court, by a law enforcement official, or in some jurisdictions by an attorney. In many cases, a subpoena directs a person to bring certain documents. Such a subpoena may be referred to as a subpoena duces tecum.
Most of the time when a subpoena is served on the university or on one of its employees, the subpoena will be a subpoena duces tecum. In those cases, a party to litigation is seeking access to some documents or records the university has in its possession. Though subpoenas duces tecum order an employee to appear in court and bring certain documents along, usually it is possible for the Office of Legal Affairs to interact with the court or attorney who issued the subpoena in order to prevent the need for a personal appearance.
The specific rules governing subpoenas vary depending on the jurisdiction of the issuing authority, but in all cases there are specific rules about who can issue a subpoena, how it must be served, and how it must be answered. In rare cases, we may receive subpoenas that are not legally valid, and in those cases we must make an appropriate response.
If a subpoena is served on your office or department, or upon you in your capacity as an Armstrong employee, please contact the Office of Legal Affairs right away so that we may make a response that is legally sufficient and with a minimum of inconvenience.
Another way litigants may attempt to gain access to persons or records is through the use of discovery. Discovery is simply a set of legal procedures that allow the parties to litigation to investigate the facts of a dispute prior to taking it to trial. Discovery requests may take several forms, and are identified with titles such as Request for Production of Documents, Notice to Produce, or Notice of Deposition. Other, similar titles may appear, but in any case, the document should identify the name of the litigation from which it arises, the name of the court in which it is being litigated, and a case number. As is the case with subpoenas, individual employees may be required to appear, but in most cases the need for this can be eliminated. Please notify the Office of Legal Affairs immediately if you should receive a discovery request.