Being injured in an accident that was not your fault may cause you to consider filing a personal injury lawsuit against the other party. You should know that you may be entitled to money damages for your pain and suffering, as well as all related medical expenses and personal property damage or loss. A personal injury case proceeds in steps, and the first major step is a deposition. This important legal meeting allows both sides of the case to learn more about the evidence, witnesses and the potential for damages if the case should go to trial. For a better understanding of the deposition process and what it could mean for your personal injury case, read on.
1. A major benefit of the deposition is the potential for a settlement offer to be advanced once the other side has viewed the medical and other evidence and the witness statements. If the offer is a fair one, you can avoid the time and expense of taking your case to trial.
2. As the plaintiff, you will likely be the primary target of questioning by both sides. Prepare for this by reviewing your medical records, police/accident reports, and photographs of the accident scene. Many attorneys advise their clients to keep a journal of events relating to the accident, and that journal can come in handy for refreshing your memory.
3. The deposition is structured similarly to court, but is a little less formal. You should take it seriously, however, since you will be still be under oath and subject to perjury for dishonesty. Just as in a court trial, witnesses may be compelled to attend the deposition via a subpoena.
4. Both sides will take turns questioning the deponents. There is no judge presiding over the meeting, so objections raised by either side are simply noted in the record by the court reporter and the proceedings move forward. Depositions are commonly video-recorded in addition to the court reporter's records.
5. You can be a team player with your attorney by being upfront about any and all criminal, financial and other issues in your past. The other side will likely do a full background investigation, so give your attorney an opportunity to be prepared to adequately handle any issues ahead of time.
6. If you ultimately end up taking your case to trial, the deposition can serve as an excellent training session when it comes to being questioned. Your attorney will gain valuable insight into how best to prepare you for trial by observing your behavior during the deposition.
Your personal injury attorney will be by your side every step of the way, including the deposition. While this important event can be stressful, count on a lawyer, such as Morales Law, to prepare you and lead you toward being compensated for your injuries.
After I got into an accident a few years ago, I realized that I needed to hire an attorney, and fast. I didn't know how to proceed through the course of the investigation by my insurance company, so I searched the area for a personal injury lawyer who could help. I was really impressed with how intelligent my lawyer was and how hard he worked to make things right with my case. After a few months, my lawsuit was settled, and I really felt like I couldn't have done it without him. This blog is all about understanding personal injury law and the benefits of working with a lawyer.