Written by attorney Julie K. Kurtz

Goals and Benefits of Depositions

During the pre-trial phase of an injury lawsuit, both sides will conduct depositions as part of discovery. The deposition is conducted outside of the courtroom, usually in an attorney’s office. Nonetheless, the meeting will be recorded by a court reporter for possible use in trial later, and answers deponents proffer can be used against them should their testimony at trial later differ. Your St. Augustine accident attorney will depose the defendant, but will also keenly observe your deposition as well.

Getting a “Sense" of the Deponent

Part of the value of the defendant’s deposition is that it will afford your St. Augustine accident attorney a sense of how well he presents himself and answers questions. A deponent’s poise and seeming forthrightness are important issues to weigh in considering whether or how to proceed to trial. If the defendant appears evasive, this will work to the benefit of your case.

Committing the Deponent

Another value of the deposition is that it forces the deponent to commit to a set of facts. In the case of the defendant, this will mean that any wandering from these facts that he takes during testimony at trial can be challenged. In addition, your attorney will be able to develop strategies for countering the defendant’s claims. In a sense, the deposition provides a way of locking in testimony, as well as giving a preview of what the defendant will say on the stand later.

Narrowing the Issues

Deposing the defendant can also help your St. Augustine accident attorney to narrow the issues of the case. This is accomplished by asking the deponent a series of questions which focus on a specific issue, each of which narrows the “wiggle room" of the defendant. For instance, if the defendant admits that he looked in his rear view mirror just prior to the collision, your lawyer can probe him for specifics—precisely how long did he take his eyes off the road, did he see anything in the mirror that drew his attention away from traffic in front of him, etc. The deposition can provide fruitful information for your attorney. Needless to say, all of the above holds for the defense attorneys when they depose you, as well.

If you need further information, or have been injured in an accident because of someone else’s negligence, speak with a St. Augustine accident attorney. Call the Attorneys at Canan Law for a free consultation.

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