Going through a divorce can be a stressful time for all parties involved, especially when it comes to depositions. A deposition is used during the discovery phase of divorce proceedings. It allows the parties in the divorce along with our lawyers the ability to seek information that is relevant to the case. Depositions are conducted outside of a courtroom with the help of a skilled court reporter, but the information can be used at trial. In a divorce deposition, it’s critical to obtain information that builds your case and gives you the best chance of getting what you want in the settlement. Discuss relevant topics and touch base with our attorneys on the following subjects to make the most of the deposition.
1. Finances: Finances are a big concern in a divorce. Ask about current income, potential sources of income, and any assets such as property, vehicles or investments that can impact how the settlement turns out. Having accurate financial information ensures that the division of marital assets is fair and doesn’t disadvantage one party over the other. Finances are also crucial when both parties have accumulated debt during the marriage and the lawyers need to determine how it should be allocated.
2. Custody and child care: If there are children involved in the divorce, it’s critical to establish custody and visitation. Ask questions involving where the children will be while the other parent is at work or how they are going to care for them in their current living situation. The ultimate goal is to work towards the best outcome for the children. The situation may change drastically from how it was previously established while you were married and living together.
3. Recreational or dangerous activities: Some personal information might be relevant during a deposition such as illegal drug use or excessive alcohol consumption. Anything that might impact the quality of life for the children should be addressed, especially since the individual is under oath and are required by law to answer honestly.
4. Specific incidents or dates: If there are circumstances that led to the divorce that are relevant to any of the issues being contested during the divorce, whether it’s related to splitting of the assets or custody, they should be addressed during the deposition so the information can be put on the record for the judge’s consideration.
5. Health: Health may come into question if a mental or physical medical condition that can impact your judgement or ability to care for children of the marriage is affecting either of the parties. It also helps to inquire about whether he or she currently carries life, disability or homeowner’s insurance and who the listed beneficiary is for the policies.
Bonus Tip – Communicate with Your Court Reporter: Divorce depositions can be an integral part to any case. It’s important to discuss your specific transcript requirements with your court reporting service prior to the deposition to be sure that your content comes back efficiently and on time.
Depositions can stressful when you don’t know exactly what to expect; but with the help of an experienced attorney, well-versed in the area, you can feel confident that your interests are being looked after.
Thanks to our friends and co-contributors from Veritext Legal Solutions for their added insight into understanding depositions.