Tips for getting through a divorce deposition

At some point during the divorce process, New York couples may have to be deposed by the attorneys hired by their spouses. The idea of a divorce deposition strikes fear in the hearts of many, but it doesn't have to be so.

Depositions are given under oath in a formal session of questions and answers, usually in an attorney's office, with a court reporter transcribing the session, and sometimes videotaping it as well. Below are some tips for getting through your divorce deposition.

-- Remain calm. While it is natural to be slightly apprehensive prior to being deposed, it is not going to be a traumatic ordeal. Your divorce attorney will be the buffer that protects you from abuse and bullying.

-- Listen to your attorney. When you hire someone for his or her expertise and knowledge, it makes good sense to listen to his or her advice. If your attorney objects to a question, don't answer it.

-- Answer each question carefully. Take your time and make sure that the attorney has completely finished asking before you answer. If it is ambiguously phrased, ask for clarification or to repeat it if you don't understand. If it can be answered simply by a "yes" or "no," don't elaborate.

-- Only answer what you know. There may be questions to which you do not know the answer, and that's okay. Simply say, "I don't know" rather than attempting a guess, which could adversely affect your case.

-- Never lie. It is very important that you tell the truth during the deposition. Lying under oath is perjury, which can result in felony charges.

The best source of information for questions likely to be asked in a deposition is your divorce attorney.

Source: Wright & Left Report, "Splitsville Discussions: 5 Ways to get Through Divorce Depositions" accessed Feb. 25, 2015

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