4 Tips for Your Divorce Deposition
Some divorce matters require each spouse to go through a deposition. A divorce deposition is essentially a testimony you give to the opposing attorney, out of court. You will be sworn in and are required to tell the truth as if you were in court, although depositions usually take place in a conference room or other agreed-upon location. All questions and answers during the deposition will be recorded and may be used as under-oath testimony in court, so it is of the utmost importance that you know what to expect and how to proceed.
Depositions are often conducted much like interviews, with the lawyer asking questions you must answer. While you do need to respond to each question honestly, the key to handling yourself well throughout your deposition is to prevent yourself from providing more information than you must. Try to maintain the formality of the deposition and do not let yourself get too comfortable. Remember, the lawyer interviewing you is trying to obtain information that can be used against you.
The divorce deposition may be difficult, and the questions you are asked could be detailed and uncomfortable to answer. Prepare for the deposition well in advance – your attorney should help you prepare thoroughly. Study the details of your case and make sure you have every fact you may need. Going into the deposition with a thorough understanding of your case can make it much less intimidating and will make answering the questions much easier.
Your attorney will be with you during the deposition and can object to certain questions, but he/she will not be able to provide you with information or answers to the questions while you’re being deposed.
Always Be Honest
There may be questions asked during the divorce deposition that you aren’t sure how to answer. If you do not remember the answer, or you simply do not know, then say so. Do not try to come up with the most likely answer or hazard a guess. Giving false answers, even unintentionally, can undermine your credibility and ultimately harm your case.
Practice Your Answers
Remember, the lawyer conducting your deposition may try to intimidate or trick you, so the answers you provide are key. There are certain questions you know will be asked, so prepare your answers with your attorney in advance and practice what you will say. Even if the questions change or are not asked, this practice can help boost your confidence and prepare you for the deposition process.Contact McKinley Irvin at any of our Washington offices for additional divorce advice from our experienced family law attorneys.