Can I refuse to attend a deposition?

Discussion in 'Off-topic' started by js415, Jan 9, 2018.

  1. js415

    js415 Active Member

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    I have been asked to attend a deposition and be questioned about an incident that occurred between my insurance company and the insurance company of a contractor that worked at my house, during an insurance claim.

    This claim happened 4 years ago, and I am very fuzzy on the details of "who said/did what".

    My insurance company called and told me the contractors insurance companies lawyers have asked to depose me.

    Can I refuse this? Will they just subpoena me if I refuse?

    I will probably miss 4+ hours of works for this. Can they be forced to compensate me for missed time?

    What options do I have?

    Any thoughts or advice from the lawyers?

    Thanks,

    Jerry
     
  2. RedDawnTheMusical

    RedDawnTheMusical Well-Known Member

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    I'm not a lawyer, but a request for deposition is just that - a request. If they proceed with litigation, then subpoenas could be produced. I would just respond that this represents a financial burden for you and you're fuzzy on the details after four years. That puts the ball back in their court as to how to proceed.
     

  3. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

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    Jerry, you can refuse— up to the point that you are sent a subpoena.

    Once subpoenad, you’d have to file an objection or motion to quash that subpoena with the court. I doubt that would be successful.

    But, generally, lawyers don’t want to antagonize witnesses that they need.

    Have you talked to the investigators or lawyers for the law firm that wants your deposition? Maybe they can work with you on scheduling it, or go over their questions with you ahead of time so y’all can shorten the questions asked “on the record” at the deposition and fine-tune your answers to be most responsive to what they’re really asking or getting at.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2018
  4. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

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    As to your lack of memory, you could have your memory refreshed with the help of looking at notes (yours, or others’), documents, photos, etc. Your own notes and writings can be used even if you don’t remember the details of the incident now, but did at the time you created this past recollection.
     
  5. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

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    Witness fees?

    Yeah, but it’s like the “fee” you earn for jury service.

    $25 a day, and if you have to drive from another county, 40 cents per mile you must drive.
     
  6. Wegahe

    Wegahe NRA Instructor

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    When you're deposed just be very careful how you answer their questions. Take notes on your answers because the same questions will be asked again if this goes to trial. It's ok to pause and carefully consider your answers. You don't want to get caught up in misleading questions designed to trip you up. If you really don't know or can't remember then just say it. Keep your answers as brief as possible. If yes and no will work then attempt to stick to it.
     
  7. UtiPossidetis

    UtiPossidetis American

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    In a situation as you've described you need to understand that no one in the room is your friend or has your best interests on their agenda. "Your" insurance company lawyer only has the insurance company's interests on their radar. The contractors lawyer only has his interests in mind. Remember that, none of them is looking out for you.
     
    AtlPhilip likes this.
  8. futureusr

    futureusr A Typical Cat

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    I don't remember nuthin clearly. Can I go now?
     
  9. AtlPhilip

    AtlPhilip Proud GCO member.

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    Remember this. They need something from you, you do not need anything from them. If you decide to participate, inform them that the deposition will take place at a time and place to your liking.
     
  10. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Yep, like on an off day from work early in the a.m. at your dining room table.

    Since you mentioned your insurance, make sure you do not violate any duty you have to cooperate with your insurance company, as such a violation may remove their duty to cover you or provide your defense. I do not know if you have such a duty in this circumstance, and I am expressing no opinion on that matter. I am just pointing out something to watch for.
     
  11. Groundhound

    Groundhound Active Member

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    “I don’t recall” has always worked for the Clintons.....
     
  12. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Just tell the truth. You are under oath. If you do not recall, then that is the truth, but do not lie about it.
     
  13. NTA

    NTA Well-Known Member

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    Friend of mine was in big demand at a depo. Had them fly him and his girlfriend to NYC for expense paid vacation. Alternative was for them to fly their legal team to him.

    Transcript does not show how long the breaks are. He and his lawyer wiould go out in the hall for a long time and chat between each question.
     
  14. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    That's different because your friend was out of state. gunsmoker has already given the Georgia rule.
     
    Motopackin likes this.
  15. NTA

    NTA Well-Known Member

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    sorry Gunsmoker is ignored
    this site hides him good
     
  16. NTA

    NTA Well-Known Member

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    My friends lawyer did get fined $10,000 for punching another lawyer in the deposition.
    Said it was worth it. He wound up with 20x that in his fee.
     
  17. js415

    js415 Active Member

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    Thanks all for the info.

    This is the info I was hunting for. I have no problem helping my insurance company. They did very well by me, and they are not the party that wants to depose me.

    It is an insurance company that represents a sub-contractor, that is holding things up and wants to drag out a subrogation process by my insurance company.

    I think I'll just wait and see if they pursue it again, and then tell them to come to Newnan late one afternoon when I get off work after 5PM.

    Thanks all for the help.

    Jerry