How can I Prepare for a Deposition?

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  • Written By: Kerrie Main
  • Edited By: C. Wilborn
  • Last Modified Date: 14 March 2020
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For many people, lawsuits are stressful situations for both the plaintiff and defendant. One major part of the overall legal process is the deposition, and it can be scary and intimidating if you don't know what to expect. Depositions are statements taken under oath that happen before a lawsuit goes to trial. They are an opportunity for both sides to size up the opponent and decide if there will be a settlement or a trial. There are several ways to prepare for a deposition to make the best impression possible, and they start with speaking to your attorney.

To properly prepare for a deposition, speak with your attorney beforehand to get an idea about the kinds of questions you will be asked when you testify. Your attorney might also be able to give you a description of the opposing counsel, prior outcomes of depositions like yours, and other information to ease your nerves. If you have any specific questions about what to say and what to avoid saying, ask your attorney before the deposition. For example, if you received a misdemeanor in the past, and you're not sure if it is still on your criminal record or if you'll be asked about it, discuss it with your attorney.


When you prepare for a deposition, think about and try to remember any specifics about the case, including dates, times, and people involved. Typically, depositions occur many months or years after the incident, and some details may be foggy. Reread any documents pertaining to the lawsuit and incident, including accident reports, insurance claims, and questionnaires previously submitted to the opposing attorney. Remembering the incident and specifics, as well as reading your past words, will help you to prepare for the testimony.

Practice answering questions out loud when you prepare for a deposition. Wait until the question is asked and the attorney has stopped speaking before answering. Remember that anything you say is being recorded and can be used as evidence at a trial. Take as much time as you need to think about how to answer a question before speaking, as there are no time limits.

Planning what to wear can be part of deposition preparation for many people. You'll want to choose something conservative, similar to what you would wear in front of a judge if the lawsuit goes to trial. Clothing should be neat and clean to portray respect for the serious situation. Following these simple steps will help you prepare for a deposition and give a convincing testimony.


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Post 2

You are so right Talentryto. I worried about my deposition for weeks, but when the time came there was nothing to it. My attorney was there with me, and jumped in every time the questions were difficult or he saw that I was unsure of what was being asked of me. It was not difficult at all.

Post 1

I had to prepare for a witness deposition last year, and I was very nervous about it. However, once I was in the deposition room, it was actually quite easy. I would suggest that the best way to prepare for a deposition is to not stress or worry about it, because more than likely it will be easier than you think.

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