How Do Depositions Help Prepare for Business Litigation?
A business litigation attorney can help you if you are a plaintiff or a defendant in a civil case. Whether you being sued or you are suing someone else, you need to be as prepared as possible if the case goes to trial. It is also important to be prepared for litigation even if you plan to negotiate a settlement. This is because the more you prepare, the stronger your claim, and the better your chances that you will be able to negotiate a settlement in your favor.
There are many different things to do to prepare when you are a plaintiff or a defendant involved in any type of litigation, from a breach of contract claim to an employment dispute to an injury case.
One of the most important aspects of preparation is to find out what witnesses will say if the witnesses are called to testify at trial. Depositions help you to discover what a witness will do.
Brown & Charbonneau, LLP attorneys have extensive experience helping both plaintiffs and defendants involved in business litigation to prepare for their case. We can assist you in identifying witnesses to depose, in conducting interviews of those witnesses, and in otherwise doing everything possible to make sure you are ready for a court case. Give us a call today to speak with an Irvine business litigation attorney who has the knowledge you need to help you make your case and who can get started in advocating for you to protect your personal or business interests.
How Depositions Help You Prepare for Business Litigation
You do not want to be surprised by witness testimony at trial, so you must find out what witnesses are going to say before the day of a court case arrives. You not only want to know what your own witnesses will testify about, but you also want to know what the opposing party’s witnesses will do and what other interested parties may say if they are called to the stand.
There are two primary ways to find out in advance what someone will say if called to testify at trial. One option is interrogatories, which are written questions. Another option is depositions. Depositions actually allow you to conduct in-person, on-the-record interviews with eyewitnesses, expert witnesses, and other parties who may be involved in testifying in a civil case. Depositions can allow for follow-up questions, which interrogatories cannot, and can give you a better idea not only of what a witness is going to say but also of how the witness comes across when testifying and of how the witness responds under cross examination.
When preparing for business litigation, you need to think about both who you are going to depose as well as about what questions you are going to ask of the person when deposing him.
According to the California Code of Civil Procedure 2025.210, a defendant can serve a deposition without leave of the court any time after the earlier of being served or appearing in the action. A plaintiff can serve a deposition notice without leave of the court at least 20 days after the service of the summons or when a defendant has appeared. The court can grant a plaintiff leave to serve a deposition earlier than this date if the plaintiff shows good cause.
A business litigation attorney will help you to move forward with the formal legal process of notifying someone of intent to depose, as well as of getting that person on record. Not only can deposing a witness help you to determine what that person will say when called to testify, but you’ll also be able to use the record of a deposition later on in the case. If the witness changes his or her story, for example, you can introduce evidence of the inconsistencies by pointing to what the witness said in the deposition. By doing this, sometimes you can call the testimony of the witness into question if you want to undermine the case against you.
How a Business Litigation Attorney Can Help
Deciding who to depose and actually deposing witnesses can be very complicated. You need to know what the law allows and also how to make strategic choices in choosing witnesses to depose and in choosing the questions that you ask.
To make sure you are making the most of your trial preparation opportunities so you can protect yourself during a civil case, contact a business litigation attorney at Brown & Charbonneau, LLP. You can give us a call at (866)237-8129 or contact us online to learn more.