What is a Deposition in a California Divorce Case?

In a divorce case, both parties have the right to find out information through a process called discovery. Discovery can be in the form of written questions, requests for documents, or depositions. A deposition allows opposing counsel prior to trial to question a witness who is sworn to tell the truth. This article will explain basic information relating to deposition with information originally published here: https://natlawreview.com/article/help-how-do-i-prepare-divorce-deposition

How long is a deposition?

Who is present?

  • Your attorney and the opposing counsel will be present. Your spouse may also be there. Any other attorneys, such as a Guardian Ad Litem, will also be at the deposition, and a court reporter.

What is the purpose of the deposition?

  • The opposing counsel has several objectives 1) to discover what you will say at trial 2) to commit you to statements under oath to prevent you from changing your story, 3) to gauge your likeability and credibility.

When will my attorney object to questions at a deposition?

  • Your attorney may raise many objections during the course of the deposition, and here are some examples derived from this article: https://www.clio.com/blog/deposition-objections-cheat-sheet/
    • Form of the question, such as vague, compound question, unclear or confusing
    • Relevance of the question, with the purpose to weed out questions that are unnecessarily harmful or time wasting.
    • There are certain relationships, such as attorney-client, where the communications are protected.
    • Asked and answered. This is an objection that is used when the attorney is defending the client from badgering from an attorney who keeps asking the same question over and over.
    • Legal conclusion. If the question calls for a legal conclusion, as opposed to facts, then this objection applies.
    • Mischaracterization of testimony. In the deposition, the attorney may misrepresent an earlier answer in a subsequent question.
  • It is your attorney’s job to make the objections and to tell you whether to answer the question, but it can be helpful to be aware that objections may be made.

What if I need to delay a scheduled deposition?

 Contact an Experienced Divorce Attorney

At the Law Office of David Knecht, we have extensive experience in all aspects of family law. We will be by your side in all phases of your divorce process, including preparing for your deposition. Contact us today at 707-451-4502.