Litigation Lawyers in Seattle
Civil depositions occur during Seattle, Washington civil litigation, as part of the discovery process.
In Seattle, Washington, "discovery" is a process that occurs before a civil trial, during which both sides are required to disclose relevant evidence to the other.
One way to acquire this information in Seattle, Washington 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 Seattle, Washington
Depositions in Seattle, Washington 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.
Civil Depositions in Seattle, Washington can sometimes go on for days, and occasionally even weeks. If you are required to appear for a deposition in Seattle, Washington, it can prove to be a considerable inconvenience.
To help deal with this fact, Seattle, Washington allows witnesses who are being deposed to be compensated for their time. They can be reimbursed for lodging, travel expenses, and given a small amount of money for their time. Remember, however, that this money is most definitely NOT conditioned on the witness giving testimony that's beneficial to one side, and omitting information that's unfavorable. This would be bribery, and it is highly illegal.
When giving a deposition in Seattle, Washington, 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 Seattle, Washington Lawyer Help?
If you're a party to a Seattle, Washington 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 Seattle, Washington 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.