Being in a car accident is a traumatic event; however, dealing with a car accident claim can make the matter much worse. Hiring an experienced Bloomington car accident lawyer can make the process less stressful for you. You need to focus on your recovery instead of dealing with insurance adjusters and others involved in settling your accident claim.
As part of your car accident claim, you may be required to answer questions about the car accident at a deposition. It can be intimidating and stressful if you have never given a deposition but with your attorney’s assistance, you will be prepared and less anxious.
What is a Car Accident Deposition?
Depositions are part of the discovery process of a lawsuit. Depositions allow attorneys to ask questions to obtain additional information from opposing parties and witnesses. It is a way of “discovering” what a party will say in court before the case goes to trial. It is always a way of learning how strong the other side’s case may be and identifying additional evidence that the party may use to prove its case.
In a car accident case, the attorney for the other driver may choose to take the deposition of several people, including but not limited to:
- You and your passengers;
- Eyewitnesses to the collision;
- Your doctors and other medical providers;
- Any expert witnesses your attorney intends to use;
- Passengers of other vehicles involved in the accident; and,
- The law enforcement officers who investigated the accident scene.
Your car accident deposition may take place in your attorney’s office or at the other attorney’s office; however, a deposition can be held at any location that the parties can agree upon. A court reporter is present to record and transcribe your testimony. Your attorney attends the deposition with you; however, he cannot answer questions for you nor can he give you advice about how to answer questions.
In most cases, the attorney begins by asking general questions such as your name, address, age, occupation, and education. The attorney may continue with questions about the car accident, your injuries, your health, your medical treatment, your income, your employment, your daily activities, your family, and your recovery. The attorney can ask any question that relates to the car accident and your injuries. Some deposition questions can become very personal; however, your attorney will not allow you to be abused or treated unfairly during the car accident deposition.
Tips for a Car Accident Deposition
Our car accident lawyers prepare you for your deposition; however, these tips are always worth reviewing and remembering.
- Stay Calm – It is natural to be nervous; however, your attorney is in the room with you and your attorney will not let you be badgered or mistreated. Take deep breaths, listen, and focus on your responses.
- Be Honest – You are answering questions under oath and penalty of perjury. Lying will not help your case and you can be charged with a felony for knowingly giving a false statement under oath.
- Never Guess – If you do not know the answer to a question, tell the attorney you do not know the answer. Do not estimate or guess unless specifically requested to give an estimate and your attorney advises you to proceed.
- Only Answer What Is Asked – Do not volunteer information. Listen to the question and answer with precise statements. To try to get additional information, the attorney will ask broad questions.
- Ask for Clarification – If you do not understand the question, ask the attorney to rephrase the question or provide clarification. Never answer a question you do not understand.
- Do Not Joke or Try to Be Funny – This is not the time to be entertaining. This is a very serious matter and you should treat it as such. Do not use humor or sarcasm when answering deposition questions. Humor and sarcasm can easily be misunderstood.
- Speak Loudly and Clearly – A court reporter is taping your answers and also typing your responses. Head nods and head shakes are not appropriate responses during a car accident deposition.
Our car accident lawyers understand you may be nervous about a car accident deposition; therefore, we spend as much time as necessary to prepare you for the deposition so you feel more relaxed and less worried.
Have You Been Injured in a Car Accident?
If you or a family member has been injured in a car accident, contact our office for a free case evaluation with an experienced car accident attorney. You can contact The Ken Nunn Law Office 24 hours a day/7 days a week through Live Chat online or by calling 1-800-CALL-KEN or 1-800-225-5536.