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Defending against a Wyoming Attorney General Subpoena

Posted by Clyde Hutchins | Sep 20, 2016 | 0 Comments

The Wyoming Attorney General has strong subpoena power. However, there are limits to the Attorney General's subpoena power. The consumer protection act provides grounds for resisting a subpoena.

The Wyoming Consumer Protection Act provides that a person served with a subpoena may petition "for an order modifying or setting aside the subpoena. The petitioner may raise any objection or privilege which would be available under this act or upon service of a subpoena in a civil action." Since the Act references "civil actions" we look to Rule 45 of the Wyoming Rules of Civil Procedure, which governs subpoenas issued in civil actions. According to Rule 45(c)(3), a court shall quash or modify a subpoena if it:

  • fails to allow a reasonable time for compliance;
  • requires a non-party to travel outside their county;
  • requires disclosure of privileged or protected matter; or
  • subjects a person to undue burden.

Beyond the list of objections, a person served with a subpoena may also object on the grounds that the Attorney General lacks personal jurisdiction over the person served. For instance, a company in Florida, with no presence in Wyoming, and with and no connections to Wyoming, would be able to argue that the Wyoming Attorney General lacks personal jurisdiction over the company and thus the subpoena is ineffective against the company.

If you have been served with a subpoena issued by the Wyoming Attorney General's Office, and need assistance in responding or resisting the subpoena, please feel free to contact Harmony Law. For more information about responding to Attorney General subpoenas, please read here.

About the Author

Clyde Hutchins

Clyde Hutchins is the founder of Harmony Law. Mr. Hutchins started his career as a lawyer in Cheyenne, Wyoming. First gaining experience as a law clerk for the district court judges, Mr. Hutchins entered private practice with a Cheyenne firm focused on civil litigation, business law and some general practice law. Later, Mr. Hutchins went to Alaska, where he was the chief litigator for a firm that engaged in bond law, corporate law, securities law, and the broad reach of municipal law. Mr. Hutchins returned to Cheyenne to represent the State of Wyoming in the national tobacco arbitration. While in that position, he developed the consumer protection unit for the Wyoming Attorney General's Office. He led over 120 investigations and enforcement actions in Wyoming and worked on numerous joint cases with the Federal Trade Commission and other states, including Colorado. Mr. Hutchins relocated to Colorado in 2016 and founded Harmony Law. Mr. Hutchins has established Harmony Law in three principal areas of law. First, it is a general practice firm in the areas of business law, estate planning and family law. Secondly, it is a civil litigation firm, practicing law in state and federal courts throughout Wyoming and Colorado. Finally, it is one of the few firms in Wyoming or Colorado that focuses on consumer protection law.

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Harmony Law is one of the few law firms in Colorado and Wyoming that focuses on consumer law. Mr. Hutchins is a member of the National Association of Consumer Advocates and state chair for Wyoming. If you have a consumer law issue, please feel free to call 970-488-1857 and speak with Mr. Hutchins.

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