A Lesson With Bieber: How Not to Approach Your Video Deposition

For those of you with pre-teens and teenagers (or maybe even because you’re an undercover pop fan, yourself), you have probably heard all about Justin Bieber. His dancing, his singing, and—most recently—his legal woes have flooded the media with more Bieber than ever before. What you may not realize, however, is that you can learn something from Justin Bieber.

You may be surprised to learn that Justin is an expert at video depositions—not so much an expert in the “how to” department, but rather in the “see and avoid” way. For you see, Justin Bieber imploded magnificently in a 2014 video deposition, cursing at the court reporter, making his own attorney fear for his career, and giving the opposing attorney the optimism of 1,000 sunshine-filled days.

A Lesson in Coaching Your Witnesses for a Video Deposition

You may have seen the video yourself—it’s a doozy. Behaving like a small child about to throw a tantrum, Bieber was in the hot seat over allegedly ordering his bodyguard to attack a paparazzi. In an early attempt to be winsome, he winked at the camera…but that is where his charm ended abruptly.

For over four hours, Bieber ignored, scolded, and critiqued both his own representation and the opposing attorney. If that wasn’t enough, he answered some questions impulsively, not allowing his own counsel time to object. He misspoke, fussed, rolled his eyes, and ignored other questions from the opposing attorney. He was a shining example of a bad candidate for a video deposition.

There will come a time in your career when you have a difficult witness that will need intense coaching before appearing in court or for a deposition. Let Justin Bieber serve as an example that while some people may have a disposition best suited for written deposition, time invested in coaching and preparing your investment can leave you with a much more useable and helpful video deposition!

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