On our website, we have sample depositions in car and truck accident, medical malpractice, and product liability cases.
As a young lawyer, I learned how to take a deposition like a young quarterback with a clipboard, second chairing depositions where I had the opportunity to watch some of the best plaintiff and defense lawyers in the country. I was able to see what I liked, what I didn’t like, and what would work for me.
Most Maryland civil litigation lawyers are not afforded this kind of opportunity. For those who have not had the opportunity, I think reading sample depositions is the next best thing. None of these depositions are intended to be held out as “How to Take a Deposition 101.” In fact, honestly, these sample depositions were largely pulled out at random. But we are pretty good at this. And reading examples of depositions taken and defended by other lawyers gives you a chance to see how another attorney approaches the task under a given fact pattern, giving you the idea of what you should (or should not) do.
How to Take a Deposition
In preparing to take a deposition, lawyers need to prepare. Sounds simple but I can’t tell you how many depositions lawyers walk into cold. (Confession: I did this earlier in my career when I thought I didn’t need to fully prepare to do the job.) You need to review the opponent’s pleadings and other discovery. Look for mistakes, inconsistencies, and checks they wrote but cannot cash. When you start asking questions, listen to the answers Again, an obvious point but it is amazing how many lawyers do not listen to the answers. If you are having a genuine conversation, that is the path to getting all of the facts you need to get your case ready for trial.