Deposition 101

deposition 101

What is a Deposition?

  • A deposition is defined as the taking of an oral statement of a witness under oath, before trial.
  • The process is essentially a question and answers session on the case matters before a trial.

When a plaintiff files a lawsuit, each party is given the opportunity to gather information and evidence regarding the issues disclosed in the case from each other. This process, known as discovery, includes deposition. During deposition, attorneys are allowed to question people involved in the lawsuit in an attempt to gather more information on the matters involved in the case. At Carlson & Work, our family law and personal injury attorneys are here to help you with your deposition needs.

The Purpose of a Deposition

  • To reveal what the witness knows.
  • To preserve the witness’ testimony.
  • To allow the parties and their attorneys to learn all of the facts about the case before trial so that no one is surprised by the information presented at trial. This information includes:
    • The witnesses being used.
    • What the witnesses are going to say.
  • To reveal the strength and credibility of a witness.

What Happens in a Deposition

  • The attorneys involved in the case will be present for a deposition, but a judge typically will not be at the deposition.
  • The attorney will ask the witness a sequence of questions about facts related to the case.
  • The entire deposition will be recorded by a court reported and later produced as a transcript for those involved in the case to read.

What to Do in a Deposition

  • Tell the truth.
  • Take your time thinking about and formulating an answer to every question you are asked before you speak.
  • Provide only information that answers the specific question you are being asked.
  • Only speak when you have been spoken to.

What Not to Do in a Deposition

  • Don’t share extra information that you are not specifically being asked about.
  • Don’t ramble on when answering a question.
  • Don’t answer questions that you do not fully understand or know the answer to.
  • Don’t use absolutes in your answers, such as “always” or “never.”

Call Carlson & Work of Reno, Nevada today at 775-386-2226 for assistance with the deposition process of family law and personal injury cases. Our experienced attorneys can help guide you through the procedure.


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