If you were recently involved in a car accident, there are several steps you need to take to protect yourself financially. You must contact your insurance provider, hire an attorney and speak with the police to ensure everyone knows your side of the story. If your injuries are severe or you were not satisfied with the settlement offered by the other driver's insurance provider, you are legally able to file a lawsuit.
One of the first steps after you file a suit is a deposition, which even though it doesn't occur in a courtroom, is still legally significant. If this is your first experience with a deposition, here are a few things you can expect:
What Exactly Is a Deposition?
According to Find Law, a deposition is part of the discovery process, and a chance for you to tell your side of the story. During a deposition, which typically occurs in an attorney's office, both you and the defendant will be asked a series of questions about the accident.
Typically, the only people present at your automobile deposition are yourself, your attorney, the defendant and the defendant's attorney. There will also be a court reporter there whose job it is to administer the oath and to record the deposition. No judge or any other officials from the court will typically be present, as well.
Typical Questions You Will Be Asked During the Deposition
Once you have taken the oath to tell the truth, the other driver's attorney will ask you a series of questions about the accident, personal information and about any medical treatment you have received after the accident.
Here are a few questions you can expect to be asked at a typical automobile accident deposition:
- General information, such as your full name, address and date of birth
- Questions about your marital status, if you have any children and how many people live in your household
- General questions about your health prior to the accident, including if you have any pre-existing conditions and doctors you have seen in the past for any medical conditions
- Your criminal background, including how many times you have filed a lawsuit in the past
- Your recollection of the accident, including very specific question about where and when the accident occurred and who was at fault
- Questions about when you saw the doctor after the accident, any diagnoses and treatments you saw because of the accident
- Any medical bills you have incurred because of the accident and if they have been a hardship
- Questions about any missed work and how the accident has impacted your quality of life
These are just a few of the several questions the other driver's attorney will ask you during the court of the deposition.
How to Prepare for Your Deposition
Preparing for your deposition is critical because it is your chance to express how the accident has impacted you, both physically and financially. This is why it is so important for you to prepare for your deposition correctly. For example, your attorney will ask you a series of questions that may be posed by the other lawyer. You will practice providing answers to those questions that are truthful and allow you to most effectively explain your part in the accident.
Additionally, it is also important to dress appropriately and to try to get as much rest as you can before the deposition. Remember, the deposition can be a very stressful event, so make sure you are physically and mentally prepared to survive this sometimes overwhelming process.
If you are preparing for an automobile accident deposition, it is vital to know what to expect. If you have any further questions about the process, don't hesitate to ask services like Law Offices of Burton J. Hass.