February 18, 2016
Depositions are important litigation tools because they usually provide clues for attorneys to predict the outcome of a case. Many times a case is won or lost at the deposition stage and can influence a defendant to agree to a settlement. Here are items to remember to do and not to do during a court deposition.
A witness usually has been given notice or a subpoena at least ten days before the legal deposition. The attorney who is conducting the deposition must sign the notice or subpoena, although a judge’s signature is not required. If the deposed fails to appear for the court deposition, it can be treated as contempt of court.
The attorney may issue a Request for Production of Documents, which allows the attorney to make copies of submitted documents. Since most cases settle before trial, many times the court deposition process can wrap up a case, as both sides can see the inevitable outcome of a trial, based on the evidence that emerges from the deposition.
Here are general points to remember if you are deposed in a court case:
You should get direction from your attorney on specific instructions. Going over the facts of the case with your attorney an hour before the court deposition can be helpful. Keep in mind that a deposition is not the same as a trial since it only involves cross examination instead of a full case presentation.
Colleen Jilio-Ryan is the Owner of Jilio-Ryan, a Tustin based premiere law consulting firm. The firm along with its certified court reporters is dedicated to providing the highest quality deposition and litigation services to attorneys, insurance companies, and corporations. With her sincere efforts, Colleen is committed to meeting the highest standards of the legal industry, and is an industry leader when it comes to on-time court reporting and deposition scheduling.