Litigation Lawyers in Houston
Depositions are part of the discovery process in Houston, Texas civil litigation.
The discovery process in Houston, Texas is one of the most important parts of the civil litigation process. During the discovery phase, each side of the lawsuit is required to make all of the relevant information it has in its possession available to the other side.
In Houston, Texas, one way to get relevant evidence is to ask individuals involved in the dispute (both parties and witnesses) about their knowledge of the matter. This is done through a civil deposition. It is essentially a question and answer session between a lawyer, and a witness or party to the action. A lawyer for the other side is present, as well as a court reporter or videographer. The lawyer asks questions of the person being deposed, who must answer them under oath.
Conducting A Civil Deposition in Houston, Texas
Depositions in Houston, Texas serve a very important purpose: acquiring testimony on the record, and admitted as evidence, when there is some reason to suspect that the witness won't be able to appear in court during trial, because of health, potential incarceration, or any other reason.
It should not be any surprise, then, that civil depositions in Houston, Texas can go on for a very long time. If you are called to appear in a deposition in Houston, Texas, this can be a massive headache.
To mitigate this, the law of Houston, Texas normally 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 beneficial to one side or the other.
When giving a deposition in Houston, 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. Therefore, if you lie, you are committing perjury, which can land you in jail.
How Can A Houston, Texas Lawyer Help?
If you're a party to a Houston, 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 the case, but have relevant information, you might be subpoenaed to appear in a deposition. In this case, you probably don't need to hire a Houston, Texas litigation attorney, but it would not be a bad idea to seek out a brief consultation with one, to get an idea of what to expect.