A Nonparty Movant is Someone that Files a Motion in a case, even though it is not one of the litigants

A party to a civil litigation is one of the entities participating in the action – – usually the plaintiff or defendant. For example, if Patty sues David and David counterclaims against Patty, both Patty and David are parties to the case.  Patty is the plaintiff, David is the defendant and counterclaim plaintiff.

A nonparty is someone (such as a natural person or a business) that is not part of the case.  The nonparty is neither a plaintiff nor a defendant.  The nonparty is not a litigant in the case.

Nonarty Movant: Example

Let’s say Patty sues David for breaching a contract.  Only Patty and David are parties to the case.  

To help David’s case, David’s attorney serves a subpoena on Terry. Terry is not a party to the case but Terry has evidence that David’s attorney thinks is important.  Terry, though, believes the subpoena is overbroad and asks for too much information.  

At this point, Terry could ask the court  to quash (suppress) the subpoena.  Once Terry files her motion to quash the subpoena, she is a nonparty movant.  Terry is not a party because she is not one of the litigants to the case.  However, she is a movant because she filed a motion asking the Court for relief.

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