Hi everyone! Dustin here from lawatyourside.com where we provide real legal help when you really need it.
A common question we get when depositions are coming up is how should I prepare for my deposition?
How would you as the client should you prepare for your deposition? First of all, that’s really up to the attorney because the attorney knows what is entailed in a deposition, what’s generally going to happen, and it’s the attorney’s job to prepare you for the deposition, but how can you personally also get prepared for the deposition.
The first thing you want to know about is prior records in your case, prior treatment records that you’ve had, prior accidents, prior injuries, things like that, so you’re not taken by surprise. Because a lot of times the defense attorney knows that information; they may ask you the question. And if you don’t remember or you deny – let’s say you deny being in a prior accident or let’s say you’re treating for your back or you have an injury to your back and you deny prior injuries to your back but they have the records that show it there, they can use that to later impeach you or later affect and destroy your credibility, and you may be coming from an honest point of view that it’s something you didn’t remember, something that may have happened years ago or just it wasn’t that major of an issue, but if it shows up on the records, it can be used to impeach you and impact your credibility.
So you want to as much as possible know what’s in your prior treatment records, know what’s in prior employment records or accident records, things like that. Know what’s in there, so you remember, so you’re prepared when you walk into that deposition about your own history because you don’t want them to know about your history and you don’t even know about your own history. So that’s the first thing that you want to prepare for.
Second is also the treatment you’ve had in this case. If you were treated at the scene of an accident or you got injured at work and there’s an incident report taken. As much as possible, you want to know what was said in those reports, what was told to the police, what did you tell someone else, or at least what was written down in those reports, so you know and you remember that, “Hey, this is kind of what was said. This is what happened.” So you have a clear story and explanation.
If there are any discrepancies, let’s say that for example you went to the doctor in the emergency room and you said that both of your knees and your legs were hurting, but only in the medical report, it only shows you’re right knee and your right leg. So you want to be able to know and explain and not be taken by surprise that you’re left knee and you’re left leg were not mentioned in that report. So those are things to keep in mind and be aware of when preparing for your deposition.
Also, you want to be able to anticipate the strengths and weakness of your case, and again, that’s something that the lawyer will help you out with. They should know the law, but you want to anticipate what is it that sort of needs explaining or where there are some gaps in consistency, what is it that I need really have a clean and clear explanation for, and you want to go over that ahead of time. So again you’re taken by surprise at the deposition and you just say something that comes to your head because a lot of times there’s a good reason and you may have known the good reason ahead of time at the time that it happened but months or years later at your deposition, you may forgot, and then when you’re confronted with that question, you may think, “Well, I don’t know” or you just throw out a random answer and then unfortunately, you can be held to that answer. So you want to think about some of the holes and discrepancies in your case and make sure you have just a valid reason, a good explanation.
Again, being truthful is best way, but a lot of times you may not remember what the truth was because this incident may have happened a year, two years, or many months ago. So that’s something also you want to prepare for as well. So those are a couple of things you want to help you prepare for in your deposition if it’s coming up.
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