This case addresses a minor, but significant point involving discovery. Rule 33(a) of the North Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure provides that "[i]nterrogatory parts and subparts shall be counted as separate interrogatories" for purposes of counting the number of interrogatories. The Court ruled that a subpart is counted separately only if it is requesting information about a discrete subject. If the subparts are "sufficiently related to the primary question," they will count together as a single interrogatory.
The Court further held that "[i]nterrogatories are designed to elicit facts in a cost-efficient manner" and that they do not need to be "one-event, one-fact questions."
In a sidelight, the Court held that once a case is removed to the Business Court, requests for extensions of time must be addressed to the Business Court, and may not be entered by the Clerk of Court in the County where the case is pending.