In the city of San Luis Obispo, discovery during a personal injury case can take three forms: depositions, document production and written discovery. The following is a brief explanation about these three forms of discovery.
Depositions: These are sworn statements given in front of a court reporter who will make a record of what has been said. Depositions can take as little as an hour or last for weeks. A witness in a personal injury case will be subpoenaed to give a deposition, and the person’s attorney will tell that person the purpose for the questioning.
Document Production: Both sides of a lawsuit have the right to see the documents the other side has that relate to the case. Not only are pieces of paper exchanged, but a court may rule that computer files are admissible. There have been cases of litigation when attorneys are required to produce deleted files after reconstructing them, though this is not common.
Written Discovery: This type of discovery is in written form. A person is given a pre-printed form to fill out with specific questions about the case. An attorney can help a participant in a personal injury trial fill out written discoveries if they are complicated or difficult to understand. A good opposing attorney will attempt to discredit you if given the opportunity, making the assistance of your own attorney important.
The discovery process should be taken seriously. When you know that you will be deposed or asked to produce documents, you should consult an attorney experienced in personal injury law if you do not already representation.