Deposition In A Personal Injury Case
If you’ve suffered severe injuries in a Florida accident because of someone else’s negligence, you have the right to file a personal injury claim against the negligent party and recover compensation. After filing a personal injury claim, it is likely that you (the victim) and the other party (the defendant), and maybe even witnesses, will be deposed at some point during the discovery phase. Below, we discuss, among other things, what a deposition is and how depositions work.
What Is a Deposition and How Does a Deposition Work?
A deposition is an out-of-court interview that happens in the presence of a court reporter and under oath. During a deposition, an attorney asks the person being deposed (deponent) a series of questions that they must answer truthfully. The court reporter then records the questions and answers. And after the deposition is over, they provide a written transcript, which the deponent and their attorney then go through and amend, if necessary.
During a deposition, an attorney can make limited objections while the opposing attorney is asking questions. And depending on their strategy, the deponent’s attorney may also ask the deponent questions to which they respond. Usually, if an attorney objects to a question asked by the opposing attorney, the opposing attorney has to fix the question and ask it in a proper non-objectionable manner. This means that, even if a deponent’s attorney objects to a question, the chances are, the deponent will still need to answer the question. However, a deponent’s attorney can instruct the deponent not to answer a question in some situations.
What Is the Purpose of a Deposition?
The primary purpose of a deposition is to gather crucial facts and details about a case and discover what kind of testimony may be offered by the defendant/plaintiff /witness. A deposition can also be used to lock a defendant/plaintiff/witness into testimony in case their version of what happened changes later on.
What You Should Expect During a Deposition in a Florida Personal Injury Case
As already mentioned, the main purpose of a deposition is to learn more about the case. However, the reality is that the opposing counsel will likely use the deposition to try to get you to make statements that negatively affect your case. Because of this, it is vital that, if you do not know the answer to a question asked during deposition, you should say you are not sure instead of guessing or lying. Remember, you are under oath during a deposition, so lying would be detrimental to your case. Additionally, you should not be quick to answer questions. Instead, you should pause and gather your thoughts to avoid saying something the opposing counsel could use against you.
The following are some of the questions you can expect to be asked during your deposition;
- Can you describe what happened before your accident?
- Can you describe what happened after the accident?
- Did you have any pre-existing medical condition(s) before your accident?
- Have you ever been a car accident before our case?
- What injuries did you suffer as a result of this accident?
- What type of treatment have you received?
- Have you ever treated for any of those injuries before our accident?
- Can you describe how the accident has impacted your life?
- Is there anything you cannot do as a result of this accident? Is there anything you can do – but now do with pain or discomfort – as a result of this accident/
- Have you filed a personal injury or worker’s compensation claim before this accident?
Contact a Plantation Personal Injury Attorney
If you need help preparing for your deposition, do not hesitate to contact our Plantation personal injury attorneys at Lyons & Snyder. We can also help you recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries and damages. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.