A deposition is a significant event in any legal proceeding as it influences the outcome of a case.
No matter how confident you are, appearing for your deposition can be an anxious or even nervy experience with court reporters, attorneys, and legal officers waiting to hear your account of events.
This post explains what happens during a deposition and how to go through it for a successful civil lawsuit.
What happens in a deposition?
A deposition is a sworn oral testimony conducted out of court and recorded by a court reporter. It allows the opposing counsel to ask you questions about your lawsuit. Instead of telling your whole story, the attorney will ask direct questions and expect accurate answers from you.
Reasons why depositions are important
Records, documents, and other physical evidence are not adequate to paint a clear picture of the facts of the case during court proceedings. After all, they are usually taken at face value.
Documents used as evidence cannot recount what happened at what time. For this reason, having witnesses testify under oath is vital, and that’s why depositions are necessary.
Depositions are oral testimonies from witnesses that are converted into written transcripts. They ensure the evidence provided by the witnesses remains the same throughout the lawsuit.
The participants in a deposition
Every deposition has at least four parties involved, including the witness, opposing attorney, witness’s attorney, and a court reporter.
- Witness – The witness provides an oral statement under oath that is later converted into a written transcript.
- Opposing attorney – The opposing counsel asks the witness direct questions about their case.
- Court reporter – The court reporter is responsible for recording questions asked and the responses to create an accurate written transcript.
- Witness’s attorney – They protect witnesses from answering inappropriate or misleading questions.
Where are depositions held?
Depositions are sworn, out-of-court oral testimonies and can happen in an attorney’s office, a conference room, or anywhere both sides deem suitable.
Clients may utilize video conferencing to conduct their depositions if the opposing counsel is out of town. The best part is that video depositions are admissible in court and are fast becoming popular due to their convenience.
Depositions are part of the legal process, and they offer a chance to tell your story about the case in a written statement. They affect the outcome of a case since any discrepancies might suggest you are not a reliable witness.