After being injured from a work-related accident, it’s not uncommon to be asked to undergo a deposition at some point during the workers’ compensation process. If the thought of being asked questions under oath has you feeling nervous, there’s no cause for concern. In this blog, we share some tips to help handle a deposition.
Listen and Wait Before Speaking
It’s important that you let the lawyer finish asking the question before answering. There will be a court reporter there, whose responsibility is to type everything that is said, which can be difficult if you and the lawyer are both talking at the same time. You also want to give your attorney a chance to object the question if it’s improper or inappropriate in any way.
Keep Your Answers Short
Don’t volunteer information. Your obligation is to answer only the question that is being asked in that moment. If the questions can be answered with a simple “yes” or “no” answer, you should answer as such to refrain from giving a long winded answer.
There will be times when it feels as though your nerves are getting to you – if you begin feeling flustered, anxious, or overwhelmed, try to remain calm and polite. The lawyer’s main purpose is to ask you a series of questions in order to “size you up,” and if you appear to be collected, you’ll come off as a more reasonable and credible individual. You can always ask for a small break to gather your thoughts before resuming.
Give Oral Responses Only
In everyday conversations, we can easily answer questions with a head nod or a simple “uh-huh.” In a deposition, however, you’ll need to be specific with your answers and they’ll need to be oral. Verbalize your answers instead of gesturing them. For example, if you’re asked about where an injury was sustained, say “my left arm” instead of just pointing and saying “my arm.”
At Pierce, Herns, Sloan & Wilson, LLC, we pay nothing unless we recover for you and our firm is composed of some of the nation’s top litigators. To speak with a dedicated Charleston workers’ compensation attorney, call (843) 968-0886 to request a free consultation.