In a personal injury lawsuit, knowledge is power. So, before engaging in any type of settlement negotiation or initiating any type of litigation, a car accident victim needs to make sure that he or she knows and understands all of the relevant facts that may come into play. One of the worst things that can happen during the course of pursing a legal claim is to be taken by surprise.
This is why the discovery process is crucial to successful personal injury claims. Discovery is the process through which a party obtains information from other parties, including the opponent. The information gathering process can occur in a number of ways, including requesting the production of documents and answers to written questions. However, one of the most common and beneficial discovery tools is the deposition.
A deposition is recorded testimony given by a witness who possesses knowledge that may be pertinent to the case at hand. Unlike written questions that are posed to a party, a deposition is live question and answer form, just like a trial. While one of the main purposes of the deposition is to uncover what a potential witness knows, another key aspect of this process is tying a witness to his or her testimony. This is because a witness’s recorded deposition can be used at trial to draw out inconsistencies and address witness credibility through impeachment.
The outcome of a deposition can be crucial to a personal injury lawsuit stemming from a car accident. Therefore, accident victims need to be prepared to approach them with the same legal zeal they would use to address settlement negotiations and litigation. This is where an attorney’s ability to strategically craft a legal approach can prove useful.