Litigation Lawyers in Baytown
Depositions are part of the discovery process in Baytown, Texas civil litigation.
In Baytown, Texas, "discovery" is a time-consuming procedure that occurs before a case goes to trial. In the process, each side of the lawsuit is legally required to disclose all of the relevant information they have in their possession to the other side.
One of the most effective ways to get information relevant to a lawsuit in Baytown, Texas 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 Baytown, Texas
Depositions in Baytown, Texas 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 Baytown, Texas can go on for a very long time. If you are called to appear in a deposition in Baytown, Texas, this can be a huge headache.
To help mitigate this inconvenience, Baytown, Texas permits witnesses who are appearing in depositions to be paid a set amount of money for their time, and reimbursed for travel expenses. However, if there is any evidence that this money is being used to influence a witness' testimony, there is going to be a serious problem: this would amount bribery, and it is a serious offense.
When giving a deposition in Baytown, Texas, be sure to answer all of the questions honestly, and to the absolute best of your knowledge. You will be sworn in before the deposition begins, and you will be under oath, just as if you were in open court. Thus, if you lie, you are committing perjury, which can land you in jail.
How Can A Baytown, Texas Lawyer Help?
If you're a party to a Baytown, Texas lawsuit and are required to appear at a deposition, one would hope that you've already retained a lawyer by this stage in the proceedings. Your attorney will have a lot of advice for you, which you should of course follow.
If you're not a party to a lawsuit in Baytown, Texas, but have knowledge about some of the facts that are at issue in a pending case, you might still be called to appear in a deposition. In that case, you probably don't need to hire a lawyer.