What to expect in a deposition

A deposition is an out-of-court statement given by a witness or party to a lawsuit, under oath and in the presence of a court reporter. The deposition is taken by an attorney, who asks questions of the witness or party. The deposition can be used at trial to impeach the testimony of the witness or party, or to refresh the witness’s memory.

If you are called to give a deposition, you will typically receive a subpoena from the attorney who is taking your deposition, instructing you to appear at a specific time and place. You will be required to swear or affirm that you will tell the truth, and the court reporter will administer this oath or affirmation.

Once the deposition begins, the attorney will begin asking you questions. The attorney may ask you about your background, your involvement in the case, and any relevant facts or information you may have. The attorney may also ask you to identify any documents or other evidence that may be relevant to the case.

It is important to answer the questions honestly and to the best of your knowledge. If you do not know the answer to a question, or if you are unsure, it is appropriate to say so. You should not guess or speculate, as this may be used against you at trial.

During the deposition, the attorney may object to certain questions or line of questioning. If this happens, the court reporter will note the objection, and the attorney will either rephrase the question or move on to another topic.

The deposition may last for several hours, depending on the complexity of the case and the amount of information that needs to be covered. Once the deposition is complete, the court reporter will prepare a transcript of the deposition, which can be used at trial.

Overall, a deposition can be a nerve-wracking experience, but it is important to remain calm and focused. By answering the questions honestly and to the best of your knowledge, you can help ensure that your deposition is as useful as possible to the attorney taking your deposition, and to the court.

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