Civil Depositions in Montgomery, Alabama
In Montgomery, Alabama, a civil deposition is a part of the discovery process in civil litigation.
"Discovery" is a process that occurs before a trial in Montgomery, Alabama. During the discovery process, both sides are required to make relevant information available to each other.
One way to acquire this information in Montgomery, Alabama is to conduct a deposition. A deposition, at its core, is a fairly simple process. A deposition is a question and answer session conducted outside the courtroom. Normally, it takes place in the office space of an attorney representing one of the parties. There are a few people who are almost always present at the deposition: there's the person being deposed, the lawyer who is going to be asking the questions, a lawyer representing the other side of the lawsuit, who can object to any questions being asked (a judge can rule on the objections later), and a court reporter or video recorder, to ensure that the testimony ends up on the record.
Conducting A Civil Deposition in Montgomery, Alabama
Depositions in Montgomery, Alabama are meant to get verbal testimony on the record and into evidence, when there is concern that the person being deposed might be unable to show up and testify at trial, or their testimony will take far too long for them to testify at trial.
It should not be any surprise, then, that civil depositions in Montgomery, Alabama can go on for a very long time. If you are called to appear in a deposition in Montgomery, Alabama, this can be a massive headache.
Because of this fact, the law in Montgomery, Alabama allows witnesses who are appearing for depositions to be compensated for the expense associated with it. This includes reimbursement for gas, lodging, and food. They can also be paid a certain amount of money for every hour they testify, to compensate them for their time. However, this money can only be conditioned on the witness showing up and giving truthful testimony. Trying to condition it on the witness testifying in a particular way ceases to be compensation, and becomes bribery, which is a crime.
In Montgomery, Alabama depositions, everyone being deposed is under oath. This means that you are legally and morally obligated to answer every question truthfully. If you deliberately misrepresent your knowledge (lie), you are guilty of perjury. And if you're caught, you could end up facing jail time and/or some very steep fines.
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How Can A Montgomery, Alabama Lawyer Help?
If you are the defendant or plaintiff in a lawsuit, chances are good that you'll have to appear in a deposition. You should, by this point, already be represented by a Montgomery, Alabama civil litigation attorney. You should do whatever they tell you to do (unless, of course, they tell you to lie, in which case you should find a new lawyer).
If, on the other hand, you're not directly immersed in the case, but have been subpoenaed to appear in a deposition as a witness in Montgomery, Alabama, you may not need to hire a lawyer. The lawyers for both sides will probably prep you for the deposition, giving you an idea of what to expect.