Civil Depositions in American Canyon, California
In American Canyon, California, a civil deposition is a part of the discovery process in civil litigation.
"Discovery" is a process that occurs before a trial in American Canyon, California. During the discovery process, both sides are required to make relevant information available to each other.
One of the most effective ways to acquire information relevant to a lawsuit in American Canyon, California is to conduct a deposition of a party who you believe to be privy to that information. A deposition is a Q&A session between an attorney representing one of the parties to a lawsuit, and someone who has knowledge relevant to the lawsuit. This can be one of the parties, or a witness. The person being deposed is sworn in, and must answer all of the questions presented to them under oath. An attorney representing the other side can object to lines of questioning, on every grounds that would be valid during in-court testimony. The purpose of this is primarily to get the objection on the record, but if it proves to be a major sticking point, a judge can rule on the objections later. If any questions are found to be invalid, the questions, and their answers, will not be shown to the jury during trial. This is much more effective than simply instructing the jury to disregard a question and answer they've already heard.
Conducting A Civil Deposition in American Canyon, California
If the parties believe that a witness in American Canyon, California won't be able to show up in court to testify during trial, because of age, poor health, upcoming military deployment, potential incarceration, or any other reason, a deposition is a very good way to get their testimony on the record before the trial. Also, if they have to be questioned for several days, it is a good way to save the court's time.
American Canyon, California civil depositions can go on for a long time - occasionally going for a week or more. If you get subpoenaed to give your testimony in a American Canyon, California civil deposition, this could prove to be incredibly inconvenient.
To mitigate this, the law of American Canyon, California usually entitles people being deposed to reimbursement. They can be compensated for travel expenses, lodging, and a can be given a small amount of money simply for their time. However, this is meant to be reimbursement for the time and expense incurred in attending a deposition, and it is most definitely not payment for the witness to give testimony that's favorable to one side or the other.
Remember, when you give a deposition in American Canyon, California, you're under oath. This means that you are under an absolute obligation to tell the truth. If you deliberately lie while under oath, you are committing perjury. Perjury is a serious crime, and can be punished by fines and imprisonment.
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How Can A American Canyon, California Lawyer Help?
If you are directly involved in a lawsuit in American Canyon, California, and have to appear at a deposition, you should already be represented by a lawyer. It goes without saying that you should do whatever they advise you to do during the deposition.
If you are not a party to the case, but are subpoenaed to testify in a deposition, you should at least consult with a American Canyon, California attorney, who can advise you on how to proceed.