The Drawbacks Of Remote Depositions

March 10, 2023 6:01 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

If you have ever participated in a remote deposition, you know how challenging it can be to conduct a successful video call. While the technology has come a long way, there are still some drawbacks to this type of deposition that you need to be aware of. 

Lack Of Focus 

As with any deposition, there are many potential distractions. For example, there may be people or pets in the room who can distract you from what you are saying. There are also other things that can happen during a remote deposition, such as tampering with your camera or video feed or having someone move your screen. You should be aware of these possible problems before you conduct the remote deposition. 

As a result, it is important to have all documents sent and received well in advance of the deposition. This can help reduce confusion or delay for the participants in a deposition, especially if they are located far from each other. Moreover, it is important to make sure that your documents are in proper orientation so they can be read properly by those who are watching or listening to the deposition. 

Lack Of Confidentiality 

Depositions in patent and trade secret cases often involve questioning about confidential business information and documents. Attorneys participating in a remote deposition should be aware that the use of such information may be restricted under a protective order. This is a very serious issue that must be addressed as early in the process as possible. 

Lack Of Control 

If a lawyer does not prepare for a remote deposition well, there is a good chance that the attorney will have no control over the technology used to conduct the deposition. The video stream can become glitchy or even drop out. This lack of control can make a remote deposition very difficult to conduct, which is why it is important to have protocols in place that ensure deposition integrity, mitigate against technology failures, and eliminate needless objections. 

Lack Of Flexibility 

One of the most important remote deposition pitfalls that must be avoided is the lack of flexibility. Lawyers who are unfamiliar with the remote deposition process should seek guidance before agreeing to a remote deposition. For example, during a remote deposition, it is critical that witnesses understand and appreciate the questions asked. This is especially true if the witness’s connection to the court reporter is slow. 

Lack Of Experience 

During remote depositions, attorneys may lack the experience to know how to conduct their testimony or introduce exhibits in the most effective manner. This can lead to a less efficient deposition and could affect the quality of the witness’s testimony. 

Womble Bond Dickinson Dispute Resolution and Litigation Team Leader Jim Cooney, who has conducted hundreds of remote depositions, said that attorneys should take the time to learn the nuances of remote technology before conducting their first one. It’s important to familiarize themselves with the technology as well as the court rules and regulations that govern remote depositions. This will help attorneys avoid pitfalls and gain more experience with this new mode of discovery. It also will allow them to better anticipate potential issues and be prepared for them before they occur. 

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