If you were going to jump out of a plane, you’d need more than a parachute: you need someone to tell you when to jump, when to pull the cord, how to land, and provide countless other little details that can make the difference between life and death.
Likewise, there may not be a rule that says you must have a lawyer on your side at your deposition—but you should strongly consider it. Before, during, and after your deposition, you will need an attorney to:
- Get you ready. Attorneys act on your behalf, but also teach you how to act on your own behalf. Instinct isn’t always the best way to give a response—and in a deposition, your gut reactions will usually work against you. Your counsel should help you to convey truthful answers in a way that will help your case.
- Choose your battles. Some cases are so clear-cut that they do not need to progress much further than the deposition stages, while others can go into trial, appeal, and beyond. If your attorney believes that your case has a good chance of settling, he may provide an overload of evidence that can push the opposing counsel into making a deal. If he thinks you could get far more at trial, he should gather additional witnesses and testimony to convince a jury.
- Examine documents. There are many different pieces of evidence that can be presented in a deposition, and attorneys will usually exchange documents that they plan on using as evidence before questioning takes place. Your attorney should not only make sure that all of your responses to questions about these documents are truthful, but also review them for any other information that can ruin your case.
Still think jumping alone is a good idea?