A deposition is a scheduled question and answer session that takes place during discovery. The questioned witnesses give their testimony while under oath.
Who might be deposed?
Any person with knowledge of facts that relate in some way to the injury-causing accident.
Objectives of those that have scheduled a deposition
Obtain facts: The lawyer that has arranged for the scheduling of the session hopes to unearth information that could support his or her client’s argument. Learn the strengths and weaknesses of the other side’s argument.
Study the credibility of the witness: Note facts that could be used in a question, in order to check for consistency, or lack of consistency in the witness’ statement.
Determine how accident took place
The rules and their significance
Both lawyers have a chance to question the deposed witness.While one Personal Injury Lawyer in Sydney asking questions, the other party’s attorney has the right to object to any question. Still, there is no judge in the room, who would be able to rule on the legitimacy of the query that had given rise to an objection.
Because no judge is present, the objection must be recorded. Once that action has been taken, the questioning proceeds. Some lawyers like to frame a query in a way that encourages presentation of a long answer. An attorney’s goal, when seeking to elicit a long answer, relates to his or her desire for a wealth of new facts.
When witnesses give a long answer, the chances for the mention of new evidence increases. For that reason, anyone that must appear at a deposition should try to give short answers.
Guidelines for witnesses
In addition to giving short answers, witnesses should make a point of creating a look that seems to suggest a defensive attitude. That means learning how to position the arms and legs. Do not cross the legs, even at the ankles. Do not fold the arms over the chest.
Avoid making any nervous gestures, such as playing with the hair or twisting a ring. Consider having someone tape you, while you are sharing pieces of information.
Learn the spot on the questioner’s face on which your eyes ought to focus. That is a spot that lies between the nose and the chin. Do not glare at the person that is asking the questions. In other words, do not look directly into his or her eyes.
Do not guess at any answer. If you do not know the answer, simply state that fact. A witness cannot be penalized for the inability to answer a given question. On the other hand, a witness could destroy a plaintiff or defendant’s case, if he or she were to state an incorrect fact.