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Encyclopedia > Deposition (law)
Civil Procedure in the U.S.
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In law, a deposition is witness testimony given under oath and recorded for use in court at a later date. In many countries depositions are given in courtrooms, but in the United States they are usually taken elsewhere. In the United States, it is a part of the discovery process in which litigants gather information in preparation for trial. Some jurisdictions recognize an affidavit as a form of deposition. Image File history File links Gnome-globe. ... Civil procedure is the body of law that sets out the process that courts will follow when hearing cases of a civil nature (a civil action, as opposed to a criminal action). ... The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) govern civil procedure in the United States district courts, or more simply, court procedures for civil suits. ... Civil procedure doctrines are rules developed by case law as opposed to being set down in codes or legislation, which, together with Court Rules / Codes, define the steps that a person involved in a civil lawsuit can, may, or can not take. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Subject matter jurisdiction is a legal term used in civil procedure to indicate that a case must be entered in the proper court of law based on the nature of the claim. ... Diversity jurisdiction is a term used in civil procedure to refer to the situation in which a United States district court has subject matter jurisdiction to hear a civil case because the parties are diverse, meaning that they come from different states. ... Personal jurisdiction, jurisdiction of (or over) the person, or jurisdiction in personam is the power of a court to require a party (usually the defendant) or a witness to come before the court. ... In the United States, removal jurisdiction refers to the power of a defendant to move a lawsuit filed in state court to the Federal district court of the original courts district. ... Venue is the location where a case is heard. ... A change of venue is the legal term for moving a trial to a new location. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... In law as practiced in countries that follow the English model, a pleading is one of the papers filed with a court in a civil action, such as a complaint, a demurrer, or an answer. ... A legal motion is a procedural device in law to bring a limited, contested matter before a court for decision. ... Service of process is the procedure employed to give legal notice to a person (defendant etc. ... In general use, a complaint is an expression of displeasure, such as poor service at a store, or from a local government, for example. ... In the law, a cause of action is a recognized kind of legal claim that a plaintiff pleads or alleges in a complaint to start a lawsuit. ... In law, a class action is an equitable procedural device used in litigation for determining the rights of and remedies, if any, for large numbers of people whose cases involve common questions of law and fact. ... The U.S. Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, 28 U.S.C. Sections 1332(d), 1453, and 1711-1715, grants federal courts original jurisdiction over certain mass actions and class actions (forms of civil action) in which the amount in controversy exceeds $5 million, and any of the members... In common law civil procedure, a demurrer is a pleading by the defendant that contests the legal sufficiency of the complaint without admitting or denying the allegations therein. ... In the common law, an answer is the first pleading by a defendant, usually filed and served upon the plaintiff within a certain strict time limit after a civil complaint or criminal information or indictment has been served upon the defendant. ... An affirmative defense is a defense used in litigation between private parties in common law jurisdictions. ... The reply is a response by plaintiff to defedants answer. ... A Counterclaim is made by the defendant to a civil procedure, in a main actions against the plaintiff or against the plaintiff and other persons. ... A cross-claim is a claim brought against a co-party in the same side of a lawsuit. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Impleader is procedural device before trial in which a party joins a third-party into a lawsuit because that third-party is liable to an original defendant. ... Interpleader is a device allowed in U.S. civil litigation. ... In law, intervention is a procedure to allow nonparties to join ongoing litigation, either as a matter of right or at the discretion of the court, without the permission of the original litigants. ... Look up trial in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... In law, discovery is the pre-trial phase in a lawsuit in which each party through the law of civil procedure can request documents and other evidence from other parties or can compel the production of evidence by using a subpoena or through other discovery devices, such as requests for... In law, interrogatories are a formal set of written questions propounded by one litigant and required to be answered by an adversary, in order to clarify matters of evidence and help to determine in advance what facts will be presented at any trial in the case. ... Default judgment is a binding judgment in favor of the plaintiff when the defendant has not responded to a summons or has failed to appear before a court. ... Summary judgment is a legal term which means that a court has made a determination (a judgment) without a full trial. ... Voluntary dismissal is when a law suit is terminated by request of the plaintiff (the party originally bringing the suit to court). ... Involuntary dismissal is the termination of a court case despite the plaintiffs objection. ... For other uses of settlement, including legal uses, see Settlement. ... In legal parlance, a trial is an event in which parties to a dispute present information (in the form of evidence) in a formal setting, usually a court, before a judge, jury, or other designated finder of fact, in order to achieve a resolution to their dispute. ... A party is a person or group of persons that compose a single entity which can be identified as one for the purposes of the law. ... A plaintiff, also known as a claimant or complainer, is the party who initiates a lawsuit (also known as an action) before a court. ... A defendant or defender is any party who is required to answer the complaint of a plaintiff or pursuer in a civil lawsuit before a court, or any party who has been formally charged or accused of violating a criminal statute. ... An empty jury box in an American courtroom For jury meaning makeshift, see jury rig. ... The phrase voir dire derives from Middle French; in modern English it is interpreted to mean speak the truth and generally refers to the process by which prospective jurors are questioned about their backgrounds and potential biases before being invited to sit on a jury. ... In the common law, burden of proof is the obligation to prove allegations which are presented in a legal action. ... A judgment (or judgement; see spelling note below), in a legal context, is synonymous with the formal decision made by a court following a lawsuit. ... Judgment as a matter of law(JMOL) is a motion made by a party, during trial, claiming the opposing party has insufficient evidence to reasonably support its case. ... Renewed judgment as a matter of law (JMOL) is the partner of judgment as a matter of law in American Federal courts. ... Judgment notwithstanding the verdict, or J.N.O.V. for short (English Judgment + Latin Non Obstante Veredicto) is a type of J.M.O.L., or Judgment as a matter of law, that is ordered at the conclusion of a jury trial. ... In law, a motion to set aside judgment is an application to overturn or set aside a courts judgment, verdict or other final ruling in a case. ... In law, the expression trial de novo literally means new trial. It is most often used in certain legal systems that provide for one form of trial, then another if a party remains unsatisfied with the decision. ... In law, a Judicial remedy is the means by which a court, usually in the exercise of civil law jurisdiction, enforces a right, imposes a penalty, or makes some other court order. ... Look up Injunction in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... In law, damages refers to the money paid or awarded to a claimant (as it is known in the UK) or plaintiff (in the US) following their successful claim in a civil action. ... Attorneys fees or attorneys fees are the costs of legal representation that an attorneys client or a party to a lawsuit incurs. ... The American Rule is a rule regarding assessment of attorneys fees arising out of litigation. ... The English Rule is a rule regarding assessment of attorneys fees arising out of litigation. ... A declaratory judgment is a judgment of a court which declares what rights each party in a dispute should have, but does not order any action or result in any legal damages. ... In law, an appeal is a process for making a formal challenge to an official decision. ... A writ of mandamus or simply mandamus, which means we order in Latin, is the name of one of the prerogative writs and is a court order directing someone, most frequently a government official, to perform a specified act. ... Certiorari (pronunciation: sər-sh(ē-)ə-ˈrer-ē, -ˈrär-ē, -ˈra-rē) is a legal term in Roman, English and American law referring to a type of writ seeking judicial review. ... For other uses, see Law (disambiguation). ... In law, discovery is the pre-trial phase in a lawsuit in which each party through the law of civil procedure can request documents and other evidence from other parties or can compel the production of evidence by using a subpoena or through other discovery devices, such as requests for... Categories: Move to Wiktionary | Law stubs | Legal terms ... An affidavit is a formal sworn statement of fact, signed by the declarant (who is called the affiant), and witnessed (as to the veracity of the affiants signature) by a taker of oaths, such as a notary public. ...

Contents

Civil Procedure in the United States

Federal courts of the United States describe the procedure for taking depositions in Rule 30 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. There are corresponding rules in state courts. If the person's testimony is demanded of a party (deponent) then notice may be given to that person's attorney. But if the witness is not a party to the lawsuit (a third party) then a subpoena must be served on him/her if he/she is reluctant to testify. The person to be deposed (questioned), known as the deponent, is usually notified to appear at the appropriate time and place by means of a subpoena. To record the statements made during a deposition, a court reporter, also known as a stenographic reporter (sometimes denoted "CSR" for Certified Shorthand Reporter) is present, and records the statements on a stenograph. Alternatively, depositions may now be taken by audio or video recording. A depostion begins by having the court reporter administer the same oath or affirmation that the deponent would take if the testimony were being given in court in front of a judge and jury. Thereafter, the court reporter makes a verbatim stenographic record of all that is said during the deposition, in the same manner that witness testimony is recorded in court. The statements made during a deposition are then published in a booklet, which is provided to the deponent and to any party to the suit, who wishes to purchase a copy. Many CSRs nowadays also make an audio or video recording. The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) govern civil procedure in the United States district courts, or more simply, court procedures for civil suits. ... A subpoena is a command to appear at a certain time and place to give testimony upon a certain matter. ... A court reporter, stenotype reporter or stenographer is a person whose occupation is to transcribe spoken or recorded speech into written form, typically using a stenotype or stenomask to produce official transcripts of court hearings, depositions and other official proceedings. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... For other uses, see Affirmation (disambiguation). ...


Attorneys for the non-deposing litigant are often present, although this is not required in all jurisdictions. The attorney who has ordered the deposition begins questioning of the deponent (this questioning is referred to as "direct examination" or "direct" for short). Since nods and gestures cannot be recorded, the witness is instructed to answer all questions aloud. After the direct examination, other attorneys in attendance cross-examine the witness. The first attorney may ask more questions at the end, in re-direct, which may be followed by re-cross. Direct examination (also called examination in chief) is the questioning of a witness by the party who called him or her, in a trial in a court of law. ... See Structure of policy debate for cross-examination in policy debate. ...


During the course of the deposition, one attorney or another may object to questions asked. In most jurisdictions, only two types of objections are allowed: to assert a privilege and to object to the form of the question asked. Objections to form are frequently used to signal the witness to be careful in answering the question. All other objections, in particular those involving the rules of evidence, are generally preserved until trial. They need not be made at the deposition. In the United States, a lawyer in a criminal case, whether it be a defense attorney or the prosecution, has a right to object to the others line of questioning. ...


The chief value of a deposition, as with any discovery proceeding, is to give all litigant parties in a contested case a fair preview of the evidence so that a "level playing field" is achieved and surprise (traditionally regarded as an unfair tactic) is avoided at time of trial. Another benefit of deposition is to preserve a witness's recollection while it is still fresh, though the trial may still be some time later. In the event a witness is unavailable for trial, their deposition testimony may be read before the jury and made part of the record in the case, with the same legal force as live testimony. In some states, depositions can be offered into evidence even if the witness is available. In any case, one party can use a deposition to impeach (or contradict) the witness's testimony in open court.


Some depositions are videotaped, in anticipation of the unavailability of a witness at trial, so that if necessary the videotape may be played for judge and jury.


Sometimes, after a number of witnesses have been deposed, the parties will have enough information that they can reasonably predict the outcome of a prospective trial, and may decide to arrive at a compromise settlement, thus avoiding trial and preventing additional costs of litigation. Accordingly, while most depositions are not videotaped, it may be of value for parties to make a positive impression on the opposing side's lawyers with respect to affect and appearance because these are telling factors as to how that person will present in front of a jury. In law there are two main meanings of the word settlement. ...


Criminal Procedure in the United States

In the United States, depositions may be taken in criminal cases. The reasons for which a deposition may be taken varies among jurisdictions. In Federal criminal cases, rules 27–32 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure govern the taking of depositions. Each state has its own laws which govern the taking of depositions. The US General Federal Court method, step by step, on processing a criminal whom is arrested and charged with an indicment (Felony). ...


Most jurisdictions provide that depositions may be taken to perpetuate the testimony of a witness, that is, preserve their testimony for trial. If the person requested to testify (deponent) is a party to the lawsuit or someone who works for an involved party, notice of time and place of the deposition can be given to the other side's attorney, but if the witness is an independent third party, a subpoena must be served on him/her if he/she is recalcitrant. This occurs when a witness may not be able to testify at trial. The deposition of the witness is taken and, if the witness is unable to appear at trial, the deposition may be used to establish the witness' testimony in lieu of the witness actually testifying. In depositions to preserve testimony, the 6th Amendment's Confrontation Clause establishes the Constitutional right of the defendant be present during the deposition and to cross examine the witness. The defendant may waive this right. The Sixth Amendment may mean the: Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution _ part of the Bill of Rights. ... The Confrontation Clause of Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution provides in relevant part: In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to . ... A constitutional right is a right granted by a governments constitution (on the national or sub-national level), and cannot be legally denied by that government. ... In law, cross-examination is the interrogation of a witness called by ones opponent. ...


Some jurisdictions provide that depositions may be taken for purposes of discovery. In these jurisdictions, the defendant does not have a constitutional right to be present, although such a right may be established by statute.


A defendant in a criminal case may not be deposed without his consent because of the 5th amendment right to not give testimony against oneself. The Fifth Amendment may refer to the: Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution - part of the Bill of Rights. ...


Related Links

Subpoena Duces Tecum (Latin for: bring with under penalty of punishment). ... A subpoena ad testificandum is a court summons to appear and give oral testimony for use at a hearing or trial. ...

External links

Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ...

  Results from FactBites:
 
Deposition (law) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (898 words)
In law, a deposition is evidence given under oath and recorded for use in court at a later date.
The deposition of the witness is taken and, if the witness is unable to appear at trial, the deposition may be used to establish the witness' testimony in lieu of the witness actually testifying.
In depositions to preserve testimony, the 6th Amendment's Confrontation Clause establishes the Constitutional right of the defendant be present during the deposition and to cross examine the witness.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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