Often portrayed as highly dramatic on television and in movies, depositions are events that happen regularly in personal injury cases. Nevertheless, people expected to give a deposition for the first time may still feel a great deal of anxiety about being questioned by attorneys on the opposite side. Knowledgeable personal injury lawyers can help witnesses and defendants get through their depositions by preparing them well beforehand.
Do Your Homework Ahead of Time
Any person going into a deposition room needs to review car crash documentation, as well as what they recall, before making any statements on record. Normally, lawyers will sit down with their clients to perform a mock deposition. This enables the client to walk through what will happen so when the real deposition occurs, they are prepared.
Only Answer the Questions Asked
When people get uncomfortable, they may talk more than usual. In a deposition, this can lead individuals to say too much or contradict a previous account. Instead of risking inconsistencies, individuals should practice listening to questions and answering them succinctly without embellishment. Not only does this give the other side less information to potentially use against the witness or defendant, but it can make the deposition move faster.
No one has all the answers in every situation, including a deposition. Replying that you do not know or that you are not sure is perfectly reasonable if it is the case. If the individual being deposed is telling the truth, this type of response is helpful and genuine. Making something up on the spot can lead to serious problems later.
Watch Out for Absolute Statements
It can be tempting to use terms such as “always” or “never,” but those absolutes can come with some issues because few events or experiences fall into these categories. In many situations, absolutes can be turned against someone in a deposition. Witnesses and defendants should stick to what they know, rather than blanketing a statement with absolutism.
Always Tell the Truth
Nothing can ruin a deposition more than someone who decides to lie. The truth is not just expected morally, but legally. Anyone giving a statement on the record in a deposition is expected to be completely honest. Depositions are always written down and the answers can be amended if they are incorrect. Therefore, the client should talk to a personal injury lawyer immediately to make sure any amendments are noted and related changes are made.
Chester County Car Accident Lawyers at Eckell Sparks Help Clients Prepare for Depositions
If you were asked to give a deposition in a car accident case, contact a knowledgeable Chester County car accident lawyer at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. today. For a free consultation, call us at 610-565-3701 or contact us online. Located in Media and West Chester, Pennsylvania, we represent clients throughout Montgomery County, Chester County, and Delaware County.