Can I refuse to respond to questions in interrogatories that involves my child’s health insurance?

UPDATED: Oct 2, 2022

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Can I refuse to respond to questions in interrogatories that involves my child’s health insurance?

My husband and I are separated, and in the process of divorce. There is a custody order already, we have joint legal, I have full physical, and he gets to see our baby only during his scheduled visitation hours. He has sent me interrogatories with many questions regarding my residence, weekly routine with our baby, and our baby’s medical insurance policy. I do not feel safe disclosing my residence to him as I have kept it confidential. I do not feel comfortable disclosing my baby’s medical insurance policy to him, as I am afraid of his harassing behaviors calling the baby’s doctor and falsely accusing me of hurting our child, attempting to get information about my address through the insurance, using my insurance for the baby instead of getting his own, etc. Can I simply refuse to respond to questions involving my residence and baby’s medical insurance?

Asked on August 10, 2019 under Family Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No, you may not simply refuse to answer: if you do, you could be sanctioned by the court, possibly monetarily, or possibly by having the court either assume the answers would be negative or unfavorable to you, or else even dismissing your "pleading" (your court filing) and deciding based only on your husband's filing. You do have the right to make a "motion"--a formal application to the court, done in accordance with court rules--and ask the court to strike those questions or allow you to not answer them. In the motion--which is "served" on your husband as well as sent to the court, since he gets notice of it and a chance to respond--you would have to articulate both the factual basis (the reasons) you believe you should not have to answer those questions and also the court rules or precedent (previously decided cases) which provide a legal justification for not answering. You may wish to hire an attorney to help you.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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