How Do You Evaluate the Overall Success of a Deposition? In our recent survey, we asked three questions about what makes a deposition successful. We all know the importance of having successful depositions. The information discovered in them can make or break a case. Attorneys, paralegals, secretaries, court reporters and legal videographers all have important roles in the success of a deposition.

As a resource to you, we created the short survey to gather thoughts and tips about depositions from the various roles involved.

In our last couple articles, we highlighted some of the answers to the first two questions. This article highlights answers from attorneys, paralegals, a court reporter, and a nurse expert to the third.

The third question was:

After the deposition, how do you evaluate the overall success (or lack thereof) of the deposition?

Some of the attorneys’ answers were (the attorneys credited gave their permission):

  • “By determining if I now know more than I did before I started.”
  • “Whether I get any new useful information; whether I get any testimony that substantiates other unsworn evidence; whether I get any good impeachment material; whether (and at what point) the opposing attorney remains composed or becomes uncorked.” – Noura Yunker, Legal Motion Solutions
  • “It almost always depends on what was said. Did we get what we wanted? Did they say what we hoped for? Did our witness say the right things or come across appropriately? Evaluating the witness will happen regardless of what they say, but the substance is more important than the form. Lots of things do not come across on paper and the transcript is what controls latter and is more likely that most will ‘remember’ at trial. So, having a clean accurate transcript is critical.” – Kyle Branson, Gillette Law Firm, P.A.
  • “Did I get the concessions I wanted?”
  • “Invariably, I immediately think about whether there were questions that I didn’t ask or those that I did and wished I hadn’t. Until I have the transcript, however, I don’t think that I can really evaluate my success or lack thereof.” – Wade Dorothy, The Dorothy Law Firm LLC
  • “I look at the following: 1. Did I meet my goals? 2. Were my questions clear? 3. Are the answers succinct so they can be read to a jury?” – Mark Katz, Coronado Katz LLC
  • “Quality and quantity of admissions”
  • “It is based on how helpful it was to our cause, and how much useful information was gained that can be used later in negotiations or trial. The more information or support for our client, the better the outcome.”
  • “If opposing counsel vomits at any time between the start of the deposition and when he/she climbs back in his/her car to leave, you probably did pretty well.” – Christopher Luhn, Christopher N. Luhn, P.C.
  • “Whether I covered the important aspects of what the witness could be expected to address.” – Dennis Horner

Some of the paralegals and legal secretaries answers were:

  • “Assessment of credibility is the most important thing an attorney learns at a good deposition. A good deposition tracks the known information against the unknown that you’ve heard for the first time at the deposition.” – Robert Stover
  • “Did you get what you were looking for, or confirm what you thought would be the case or situation?”
  • “Evaluation for overall success is based upon the questions as long as they are the expected outcome such as supporting the case materials and the affidavits of the defendant or the plaintiff.”

A court reporter answered:

  • “How well I wrote and good communication between myself and the attorneys in order to ensure they receive a clean record and in the specific way they want the transcript(s) delivered to them.” – Teri Finney, Rogers Harvey & Crutcher Court Reporters

A nurse expert answered:

  • “The deposition is successful if I have educated the attorney who requested the deposition as to the applicable standard and whether or not the care providers met that standard.” – Janet Scott, Nursing Decisions, Inc.

What tactics do you believe to be most effective during a deposition?

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In our recent survey, we asked three questions about what makes a deposition successful. We all know the importance of having successful depositions. The information discovered in them can make or break a case. Attorneys, paralegals, secretaries, court reporters and legal videographers all have important roles in the success of a deposition. As a resource […]

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In our recent survey, we asked three questions about what makes a deposition successful. We all know the importance of having successful depositions. The information discovered in them can make or break a case. Attorneys, paralegals, secretaries, court reporters and legal videographers all have important roles in the success of a deposition. As a resource […]

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