Deposition Preparation: The Four Simple Rules

Vol. 40 No. 4

The author, an associate editor of Litigation, is the author of Attorney-Client Privilege and the Work-Product Doctrine, Fifth Edition (American Bar Association).

Like all professionals, we lawyers often speak our own special language. We forget that laypeople do not understand the lingo that has become second nature to us.

So, when preparing a client for a deposition—even a fairly sophisticated client who you have reason to believe understands lawyer talk—act as if your client is a naïf. If you do it well, even the most sophisticated client will be grateful and will not feel condescended to or insulted.

First and foremost, don’t assume your client even knows what a deposition is. Be sure to ask whether your client has ever given a deposition and, if so, ask for feedback:

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