You may be nervous taking your first deposition, which is natural depending on the severity of the situation. When you’re a new attorney, you need to stay calm and realize all the facts before doing a deposition. Remember your client is the priority, and do your best to cover what you think could be potential mistakes. Here are some tips to help you with your first deposition.
Be Flexible With How You Ask Questions
It’s imperative to have an outline but use it as a guide to help you start developing the best depo summary. When you begin writing full questions, it doesn’t give you much to take notes. Write little blurbs as reminders to help make the conversation flow better and taking down information more feasible.
Also, you won’t be in your head so much to get the ideal reaction for a follow-up question. You’re letting the natural conversation guide you and lead you to the appropriate question you want to ask. You can always fix things later when you create your summary from the transcript.
Know the Facts
An experienced attorney has been on hundreds of depositions and can do these in his sleep. However, you may get the edge because you know every bit of detail. You may spend hours writing the deposition and take your time so that nothing is left out.
Reading the transcript in full can help you digest the witness narrative to create a solid summary for pre-trial and legal proceedings. Don’t let the extra work get to you. You may have a supervising attorney who understands that you need to put the time in to gain more familiarity with deposition.
Always appreciate the process of fully understanding the law to make you better at your job.
Be Clear on the Rules
After many years of doing depositions, experienced lawyers may neglect the rules. Remember, each case is different, and you never know what can happen depending on the state. One of the first things you should think about is the length of the deposition.
Is there a time limit? What are some of the stipulations before you can start the depositions? Let’s say that you’re facing an experienced attorney, and his client isn’t doing well in the deposition process.
The experienced knows when it’s time to stop the deposition in the last hour. This change in momentum allows the client to regroup and prepare for the next round to finish. Not preparing for something like this may affect how you proceed in a trial.
When writing a summary from pre-trial evidence, know the ins and outs of a deposition to complete it to the best of your ability.