US Business News

What You Should Know Before Conducting a Remote Deposition

Often critiqued as an industry resistant to change and technology, the legal ecosystem has become more agile and fluid in the wake of the pandemic. Many court proceedings are now conducted via audio conference or video conference, and attorneys have the option of attending depositions remotely. 

For the uninitiated, a deposition is an opportunity for parties in a civil lawsuit to acquire testimony from a witness under oath before trial. It’s part of the discovery process by which parties gather facts and information to better present their claims and defenses at trial.

Typically, depositions, whether in-person or remote, include the deponent, court reporter, opposing counsel, deposing counsel, and sometimes an interpreter and a videographer. However, in-person depositions are held in the offices of one of the lawyers in the case and require travel and blocks of time on both the attorney’s and the court reporter’s schedules. In contrast, remote depositions can be conducted anywhere with a suitable recording environment and a reliable internet connection. Notably, remote depositions can be a great alternative when one of the parties cannot be physically present.

When scheduling a remote deposition, there are a few things that should put in place to avoid pitfalls and ensure a seamless process. A successful deposition requires every participant to be adequately prepared. Many litigation support firms offer professional assistance, making the often tedious process quick and hassle-free.

 First, parties should communicate where each participant will be located during the proceeding, particularly identifying where the deponent will be located or how other participants will appear, whether remotely or socially distancing in the same room. Additionally, each participant should be notified that the deposition is being taken remotely through video to avoid misunderstandings.

 It’s also important to remember that legal documents are crucial to every deposition, even more so for remote depositions. Therefore, all needed documents should be requested days before the deposition to allow the counsels to review and, if appropriate, use them during the process.

 Another critical factor to consider is the deponent’s access to a tablet or computer with a video camera and a strong, stable internet connection. Also, the deponent should be in a quiet, well-lit area. Performing a test run before the scheduled deposition is essential to avoid unwanted technical issues. This helps to acquaint participants with the video-deposition platform, functions, and other technicalities like exhibit-sharing, background lighting, internet connection, and audio and video connection.

It is best to record any remote-video deposition unless there is a reason not to. The recorded video may be extremely useful in court and can be shown to better convince a jury, especially when unexpected circumstances occur during the proceeding. However, remote-video depositions are not automatically recorded and should be requested from the court-reporting service ahead of time.

Before the proceeding, the deponent should know preliminary instructions about the deposition rules. Additionally, the deponent should avoid outside interference during the process. This includes opening other tabs on the device, emails, text messages, or any other platform of communication. This will also protect the deponent from displaying sensitive information.

 With these measures in place, remote depositions can be a better alternative to in-person depositions. At the end of the proceeding, the deponent should review a copy of the transcript carefully, correct any mistakes, and ensure that the transcript accurately reflects their testimony.

 Following these essential tips can help you better prepare for your remote-video deposition and prevent commonly avoidable problems during the proceeding. Having perfected the process after conducting thousands of remote depositions, Naegeli Deposition & Trial has established itself as the top-of-mind choice in the industry. It simplifies the deposition process for its clients and provides them with a personal video technician from the beginning until the end. With the professional experience of firms like Naegeli Deposition &Trial, the remote deposition process is much easier to manage. 



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