You Get Up to Six Hours for a Deposition
Video Transcribed: Why should you pay a thousand or more dollars extra on top of your retainer to do a deposition? My name is Brian L. Jackson, I am a Father’s rights attorney in Oklahoma. Today I want to talk to you about the Advantages of a Deposition.
Deposition, to start with, I want to talk to you first about what a deposition is. It’s similar to testifying in court, except you’re not in a courtroom. You’re usually in a conference room or some kind of an office.
And like in court, you’re put under oath and there’ll be a court reporter present and it gives… In the case of, if you are the one asking for the deposition, it gives your lawyer an opportunity to put the opposing party or another witness under oath, and pretty much just grill the hell out of him.
The scope of discovery in Oklahoma’s very broad. The rule is you can explore anything that tends to lead to relevant evidence. That’s a pretty broad standard and in deposition, you can ask almost anything you want, and it’s probably acceptable.
A deposition is on the record and it’s an opportunity to really explore. Like, for example, if you’re dealing with serious allegations, it’s a way to explore what the person’s testimony is going to be on those allegations. If you are dealing with a situation where there’s a lot of assets, you can use it to explore how the individual thinks that assets should be divided up. It can be quite valuable in more complex family law litigation.
Also, it’s a valuable tool in the case of a protective order, because one of the things you can use it to do is box your opposing party into a corner so that you have them locked into a story. That way you know what they’re going to say and if it changes in court, you have that transcript to impeach them.
That is you can contradict what they’re saying and make them look like a liar. So deposition can be a valuable tool and usually where it becomes important is in a couple of scenarios. Anytime you’re facing really serious allegations involving domestic violence or anything involving a child. Like for example, child abuse, child neglect, any kind of sexual misconduct, depositions are invaluable, because you can get to the details of the story.
The other time, I believe a deposition is a really good tool if you have the war chest to pay for it is that if you’re dealing with a protective order. And this is true, whether you’re talking about a real serious allegation or one that’s borderline because again, it’s an opportunity to lock that person into a story.
And one of the cool things about it is you can force them to spill their guts about every single reason that they can think of at that time as to why they need a protective order. And then when they get to court, if they start trying to embellish and add new reasons, you’ve already locked them in.
Now, the last reason why deposition can be invaluable is written discovery is routine. Pretty much anytime you’re in divorce court and anytime I go to protective order court or a paternity court, I always do written discovery.
But the problem with written discovery is it has its place. Don’t misunderstand me, but because it is written and there’s a greater time period involved, the other side’s attorney has time to polish it and clean it up as much as possible to present the best responses they can.
What’s cool with deposition is you can put the other side on the spot a little more. They don’t have time to work with their lawyer to polish their answers.
Yeah, they’re probably going to practice for deposition with the attorney and you can expect that, but they’re still put on the spot and the attorney isn’t necessarily going to know everything you’re going to ask with enough lead time to cover every possible topic. They’re going to cover the obvious stuff, but not every possible topic.
So the result is that you’re going to get more honest answers with less filtering by counsel. And because it’s so broad, whereas written discovery you get 30 interrogatories, 30 requests for admissions, and 30 requests for productions.
You get up to six hours for a deposition. You can cover a lot of ground in that time and it can help you better focus on the written… Or help your attorney better focus the written discovery so you get more bang for your buck.
So those are some of the advantages. Now it is costly and it might not be something to do in every single divorce case, but it’s definitely something to consider if you have real assets, if you’re facing really serious allegations, if you’re in protective order court.
If you have the money, it’s definitely worth it. So guys, if you are in a situation where you have questions about divorce, child custody, about a protective order, you need a good lawyer. And one place you can find a good lawyer is at dads.law where fathers are not disposable.