Litigation Lawyers in Fort Smith
In Fort Smith, Arkansas, a civil deposition is a part of the discovery procedure in civil litigation.
"Discovery" is a procedure that happens before a trial in Fort Smith, Arkansas. During the discovery process, both sides are obligated to make relevant information available to each other.
One way to receive this information in Fort Smith, Arkansas 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. Typically, 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 Fort Smith, Arkansas
Depositions are typically conducted in Fort Smith, Arkansas if a person's testimony will take several days, or more, to deliver. By doing this before a trial, the jury can be presented just with the testimony that turns out to be relevant, saving everyone a good deal of time. It is also useful if there is any reason to suspect that the witness will be unable to show up in court.
So, it shouldn't be astonishing that civil depositions in Fort Smith, Arkansas can generally go on for several days. If you are subpoenaed for a deposition in , Arkansas, you are typically obligated to appear. This can be a source of some inconvenience.
Because of this fact, the law in Fort Smith, Arkansas permits 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 specific way ceases to be compensation, and becomes bribery, which is a crime.
In Fort Smith, Arkansas 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 extremely steep fines.
How Can A Fort Smith, Arkansas 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 time, already be represented by a Fort Smith, Arkansas civil litigation attorney. You should do whatever they tell you to do (unless, of course, they tell you to lie, in that case you should find a new lawyer).
If you are not a party to the lawsuit, but are subpoenaed to testify in a deposition, you should at least contact with a Fort Smith, Arkansas attorney, who can advise you on how to proceed.