Successful Depositions

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Success is never a guarantee in life.  However, there are steps you can take to increase your likelihood of success in any given endeavor. Take, for instance, scheduling and taking depositions. If the goal is successful depositions that prove useful in the overall preparation of a case, there are systems you can put in place to help accomplish just that. Keep reading to learn three important steps for successful depositions!

Support – A qualified reporter is absolutely vital to a productive deposition. Without one to accurately record the proceedings (and provide an instant rough draft, if requested), the deposition may as well not have occurred at all. Excellent court reporters meet deadlines, ensuring you receive a final transcript on time, even if expedited delivery is requested. Make certain you have a professional, qualified reporter on your case by working with a reputable court reporting agency. The same agency can provide a legal videographer if one is needed, to record the proceedings in high definition. Quality video is especially important in international depositions, as in most cases, foreign witnesses cannot be compelled to testify in the U.S., so the video record of their deposition can be used in court. The agency can also reserve conference rooms, or videoconference facilities, interpreters, and assist with multiple logistical tasks.

Preparation – Thorough preparation for the deposition is a must and include the court reporting professionals. Make sure your agency has copies of all applicable Notices, Complaints, and any other case-related materials that will be useful to them. If the witness will require an interpreter, ensuring these materials are with the interpreter at least a week beforehand will aid the interpreter tremendously at the deposition. Just as attorneys need to prepare for a deposition, the court reporting team needs to prepare in advance, familiarizing themselves with names and terminologies. This all builds the foundation for a smooth deposition.

Communication – Clear communication with the court reporting agency is essential. Make sure to answer any questions they may have for you, such as expected duration (especially if they are reserving the location on your behalf!). If they have a Standing Order Form, take advantage of this great tool to convey your delivery expectations of the transcripts, video, etc., and to whom they should be delivered. Ask questions to ensure no detail is missed, everyone is on the same page, and there are no ugly surprises down the road. As the proceedings go on, keep the lines of communication open, notifying of schedule changes, cancellations, attorney changes, additional depositions in the case, etc.

In short, having a professional team to support you, providing them ample materials and time to prepare, and communicating effectively throughout the process makes for seamless, successful depositions. Even if the depositions are taking place overseas, these three steps apply, leaving the court reporting agency in a position to guide you through the process.

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