A contested divorce must often be taken before a judge in family court. The judge will hear both sides' arguments over disputed issues so that the judge can issue an independent ruling and move the union toward dissolution.
During your contested dispute, you will likely participate in depositions. What are depositions? How are they used in divorce cases? And how can you make a success of any depositions during your case? Here's what you need to know.
What Is a Deposition?
A deposition is an interview of either a witness or a party to a case made under oath. It usually happens at an office or neutral setting, and the lawyer asks the prepared questions.
Depositions are part of the pre-trial process known as discovery. This period of time involves the exchange of evidence between the two parties in the trial. You must participate in discovery as a party. Witnesses may be obligated to sit for a deposition if the court issues a subpoena.
What Matters Are Covered?
The questions asked in a deposition vary depending on how the witness or party is related to the case at hand. For divorces, this means questions that relate to matters in dispute.
For instance, the party in a divorce may be asked about their income, assets, debts, and other financial matters. Questions may revolve around who cares for the children, their relationships, and how expenses are paid. A party may be asked about their recreational activities, current relationships, and specific events which may be a factor in the divorce.
Do You Have to Answer?
Divorce depositions can be very far-reaching. They are often some of the broadest types of depositions because so many factors can impact the divorce decree. For example, a lawyer in a car accident trial may not be allowed to ask about the party's mental health or religious affiliation, but these may both be relevant to a divorce case.
This means that you and your legal team will need to identify as many of the areas of questioning an opposing lawyer is likely to bring up. You can then prepare truthful answers without volunteering extra information.
However, there are some limits to deposition questions. Even with the wide range allowed during divorce cases, you can object to specific questions on legal grounds. You may still need to answer these questions, but the judge may rule later on whether or not they can be used in court.
Where Should You Start?
Learn how to handle a deposition in your divorce case by meeting with a qualified divorce attorney in your state today. With their help, you can get the evidence you need while protecting your case from your soon-to-be ex.
Contact a local divorce attorney to learn more.Share