What is a Deposition?
A deposition is an oral statement of a witness taken under oath. Depositions are taken of parties, witnesses and others who may have knowledge about a specific case. Depositions are taken in all types of cases, from car wrecks to workers compensation matters to family law matters. Depositions help the parties to learn the facts of a case before it goes to trial. Depositions also help the attorneys on both sides evaluate what type of witness a plaintiff, defendant or witness may be at trial.
Plaintiffs in cases such as those listed above are asked a variety of questions, many of which may not even be directly related to their case. But the other side is entitled to ask about most anything in depositions.
They usually takes place in an attorney’s office and is recorded by a court reporter, which then makes a written transcript. They are also sometimes recorded on video, especially if the attorney taking the deposition might want to use it at trial.
The length varies from case to case. Most last only a few hours, but some can be shorter, and some can last much longer.
The most important rule I tell EVERY client prior to a deposition is to tell the truth. There is nothing worse than a client lying throughout a deposition, being caught in a lie during or being caught in a lie after. It can negatively affect the value of the case.
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