Understanding Commercial Litigation in Maryland

If you are in the midst of a business dispute, it is important that you have an understanding of commercial litigation in Maryland. Each state has its own set of rules and regulations when it comes to business transactions and Maryland is no different. Contact a seasoned commercial litigation lawyer today and set up a consultation. An attorney could help you with understanding commercial litigation in Maryland.


Subpoenas are a major part of understanding commercial litigation in Maryland. A subpoena is a document that issued by the court that commands a person to appear either at a hearing or deposition and present testimony or provide documents. It is a court order and is an extension of the court process. The party who is subpoenaed is then under the court’s jurisdiction and they have to abide by what is being commanded by them in that document. Also, there are usually subpoenas for nonparties, which are people who are not part of the litigation, and it commands them to produce records that they have in their files. Banks are commonly asked to produce records and businesses get subpoenas all the time.

If a person or business is served with a subpoena and they do not respond, the court can impose sanctions against a person. A sanction can put a person under a timeline to respond, as in they have 14 days to respond or else pay someone or some entity to do the search. The individual may then have to go before the court and explain the situation. They could be found in contempt if they do not fulfill their obligations under the subpoena.

Legal Concept of Privilege

A privilege is a legal concept that allows people to speak or work freely. It means that the product of those conversations, whether written or verbal, does not have to be disclosed. The classic example is the attorney-client privilege, which allows attorneys and clients to speak freely to each other without the risk of having the communication made public to people outside of their immediate communication. The idea is that it helps promote good lawyering because then the attorney is supposed to find out everything, good and bad, keep secrets, and deal with it without having to run the risk of being exposed to the other side, where the information can be used unfairly.

Also, there are other types of privileges that exist. There are mental health privileges, marital privileges, accounting privileges, and work-product privileges.

What is a Privilege Log?

A privilege log is used when a person is responding to discovery or subpoena. The Federal Circuit requires that a person produces a log of documents for which they are claiming a privilege. For example, if a person has emails on their system and they are hit with a subpoena and those emails consist of, say, 10,000 pieces of communication they had with their attorney, then they have to prepare all logs that contains information that is sufficient enough to allow the other side to determine whether the privilege applies. A person has to detail in this log, what the document is, the date of the document, who the parties are, what the general topic of discussion is, and what privilege is being asserted. That information then gets turned over to the other side. The party issuing the subpoena will review and decide whether or not they think privilege applies. If not, then they will come back and ask for more information. Usually, this is a way of protecting privileged information. If the person fails to produce a privilege log, then some courts will consider the privilege waived if the individual tries and assert it later on.

Respondeat Superior

Respondeat superior is a concept by which principals are responsible for their agents. The principal is the owner or the entity itself and the agents are all the people that are doing the work or the business of the entity. The individuals are generally not responsible for actions unless they are doing things that are outside the scope of their work or their agency. If they are doing work for the business, then the business is ultimately the one that is responsible for the acts of the agents. For more information about respondeat superior and anything else that could help you with understanding commercial litigation in Maryland, reach out to a seasoned attorney today.