What’s the Purpose of a Deposition in a Personal Injury Case?

by Staff Blogger | February 14th, 2022

Depositions assist the court and the two implicated parties, the injured and the liable, by sharing information about the facts of a personal injury case. A deposition is a legally admissible testimony where an attorney asks the deposed a series of questions about the case.

In a personal injury case, a host of people may be called to give a deposition. For example, an eyewitness may have valuable information about the property where a slip and fall occurred. The injured party and the potentially liable party almost always give depositions in personal injury cases.

The information obtained in depositions can go a long way to proving liability. Learn how a lawyer can assist you in the deposition process.

Who Orders a Deposition?

Depositions are a part of the discovery process in a personal injury case. Discovery is the period when both sides of the case communicate freely and gather information about the case.

The goal of discovery is to collect all the pertinent information about the personal injury case. This includes information about negligent actions, the injured party’s actions, and any third-party information related to the injury.

Both the plaintiff’s and the defendant’s attorneys have the right to order a deposition of anyone crucial to the case. Sometimes only the injured and liable parties are essential to the case. Other times an attorney may depose eyewitnesses or an expert witness with authority on an important topic.

In California, each side of a case may only depose someone once. This limits the ability of either side to use the deposition process as a harassment tool.

How to Set Up a Deposition

The deposition process consists of much legal, clerical work, even more so if the deposed does not voluntarily attend their deposition. This frequently happens because it can sometimes be stressful and time-consuming to be deposed.

To get the opposing party to a deposition, you or your attorney writes an original Notice of Taking of Deposition. To get a third party to attend a deposition, you or your attorney must serve them with a subpoena. You need to serve an additional subpoena if they are required to bring documents related to the case.

Setting up a deposition is time-consuming and full of legal complexities. If you are involved in a personal injury case, contact a San Francisco personal injury lawyer for guidance.

What if You Are Called to a Deposition?

If you are the injured party in a personal injury case, it is possible that you will be the subject of a deposition. The opposing party’s lawyer will ask you questions about the incident. Their goal is to show that their client was not responsible for your injury.

Lawyers often ask open-ended questions to get long answers in response. Long answers can include seemingly unimportant information that proves the case one way or another.

An experienced personal injury lawyer advises you on how to answer questions. Your lawyer can also object to questions, which may get them stricken from the record. Having your lawyer present for depositions to protect your legal rights gives you the best chance at getting the compensation you deserve.

How a Deposition Helps You

A deposition can help prove that the negligent party owes you compensation by unveiling the facts of the case that support your side of the story. Your personal injury attorney studies your case and considers the relevant laws to determine what questions they need to ask the negligent party.

Once all depositions are over and the rest of the discovery phase is complete, your attorney can settle your case out of court or take it to trial. If a negligent party injured you, then either of these options can lead to financial compensation to cover your medical bills, lost wages, and other losses you experienced due to the injury.

Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help You

A deposition is an essential part of your personal injury case because it can uncover evidence proving you deserve compensation. Even small mistakes in depositions can lead to significant financial losses in potential damages.

Let the experienced San Francisco injury attorneys at Berg Injury Lawyers handle your case and prep you for your deposition. Contact Berg Injury Lawyers for more information and a free initial consultation.