A vehicle accident trial can bring some very stressful issues to light, and that is actually the purpose of a deposition. If you and your lawyer are unable to resolve an accident using a settlement, you may be bound for court. Part of the trial preparation period, called discovery, is the deposition. You may be expected to personally participate in the deposition, and it's easy to be nervous about the experience. Read on and learn how to not only survive the deposition but to come out a winner when it results in a fresh settlement offer.
This meeting sounds scary, but it's nothing to worry about. Your personal injury lawyer will be there at all times, and you will be well-prepared to answer all questions posed by the lawyers. Present at a deposition are the lawyers for both you and the other driver (their insurance company's lawyers, in most cases), a court reporter, and one deponent at a time. Since little room is needed, they commonly take place in a conference room. You and all other deponents are sworn to tell the truth and are asked questions about the accident and injuries. Whatever comes out in a deposition can be used later in court.
Fresh Settlement Offers
Depositions provide both sides with information – that is the point of all discovery actions. That means evidence may come to light that prompts a new settlement offer. For example, if an eye-witness for your side provides compelling testimony about the way the accident happened, the other side may conclude that it's not worth taking the case to court and try to settle outside of court. Also, if you and other witnesses are calm, believable, factual, and well-spoken, the other side may not want a judge and jury to hear your side of things.
Take These Steps and Be Ready
Talk to your personal injury lawyer about how to prepare for the questioning and what to expect at the deposition. Here are some points to keep in mind when you are getting ready to be deposed.
- Know what the other side will throw at you. When cases don't settle, there is a reason. Know what the contention is with your case. For example, if the other side is questioning your medical expenses and claiming that you had a preexisting condition, be ready. Review records of previous injuries or conditions and be ready to show how the accident worsened those injuries.
- Don't get rattled when questioned. This might be the first time that anyone has shown doubt about some aspect of the case. Just keep calm and push your emotional responses to the side. The other side will try to catch you off-guard, make you think you don't know what you are talking about, and do everything they can to destroy your case. That is their job, and your job is to remain steadfast in your own knowledge of how things happened.
Talk to your personal injury lawyer about prepping for your deposition and come out a winner no matter what.
To learn more, contact an auto accident lawyer.Share