Lay Witness and Expert Witness Depositions in Personal Injury Cases: Advanced Deposition Techniques

Leveraging Restatement, Summarization, Boxing-In and Exhaustion Strategies; Using Deposition Testimony During Settlement and Trial

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A


Conducted on Thursday, April 6, 2017
Recorded event now available


This CLE webinar will discuss advanced techniques for taking and defending depositions of lay witnesses and expert witnesses in personal injury litigation. The panel will review strategies for getting the most out of depositions, including when and how to use and properly sequence the techniques of restatement, exhaustion, boxing-in and summarization to increase the effectiveness of depositions. The panel will also explain tactics for leveraging deposition testimony during discovery, settlement negotiations and trial.

Description

Effective deposition skills are critical to a successful personal injury practice. Information gained during depositions of lay witnesses and expert witnesses impacts trial strategy and settlement discussions. Obtaining or protecting critical information during depositions is key to a positive—or negative—case outcome.

The value of deposition testimony depends very much on the attorney’s approach. In that regard, personal injury litigators must hone their skills with practiced techniques to elicit testimony and evidence critical to a favorable disposition of the case for their clients. Counsel must be particularly proficient in the techniques of restatement, exhaustion, boxing-in and summarization. In addition, case framing strategies should be utilized to properly highlight facts from adverse witnesses that are critical to winning the case.

If implemented correctly, these techniques will give personal injury litigators the best shot at gathering vital information from even the most difficult or evasive deposition witnesses. Conducting depositions using these techniques can also provide information needed to impeach opposing witnesses during trial or help shape a winning settlement strategy.

Listen as our authoritative panel of personal injury attorneys discusses effective techniques for taking and defending depositions of lay and expert witnesses, including how to leverage the advanced techniques of restatement, exhaustion, boxing-in, case framing and summarization, and how to effectively use deposition testimony during discovery, mediation, settlement negotiations and trial.

Outline

  1. Advanced deposition techniques
    1. Determining where and when to depose witnesses
    2. Should a certain deposition not be taken (e.g., Will a medical report on its own be better than physician’s testimony?)
    3. Depositions of “Persons Most Knowledgeable,” e.g. FRCP Rule 30(b)(6) depositions
    4. Overview of case and case framing
    5. Lay witness vs. expert witness depositions
    6. Particular questioning strategies
    7. Restatement
    8. Exhaustion
    9. Summarization
    10. Boxing-in
  2. Post-deposition strategies
    1. Using deposition information during discovery
    2. Bringing other witnesses testimony to light with a deponent
    3. Establishing facts from depositions at settlement conferences and mediation
    4. Using deposition testimony at trial
    5. Using deposition information to pin down liability, with examples
      1. Establishing standard of care in roadway construction cases
      2. Establishing causation in tire tread separation cases
      3. Establishing fault in turn arrow intersection cases

Benefits

The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What are the most common challenges personal injury litigators face when taking and defending depositions of lay witnesses and experts?
  • What deposition techniques will maximize the information obtained from witnesses?
  • How will using the techniques of restatement, exhaustion, boxing-in and summarization improve personal injury counsel’s ability to impeach an opposing witness?
  • How can deposition testimony be most effectively used during discovery, settlement and trial?

Faculty

Anthony D. Castelli, Atty
Law Offices of Anthony D. Castelli, Cincinnati

Mr. Castelli has handled thousands of cases ranging from the auto accident "whiplash" injury to auto accident and product liability wrongful death claims. He has presented at many CLE programs in the areas of evidence in trial practice and trial of personal injury cases. He authored two books on personal injury issues and was a contributor with 14 other lawyers to the best seller, Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing – What Your Insurance Company Doesn’t Want You To Know And Won’t Tell You Until It’s Too Late. He, along with Mathew Dolman and Michael Ehline, are founding members of a lawyers’ group known as the Circle of Legal Trust. 

Michael E. Holden, Esq.
Romanucci & Blandin, Chicago

Mr. Holden is a trial attorney with experience in the litigation of personal injury cases, including medical malpractice, products liability, nursing home negligence, premises liability, construction injury, and auto accident cases. He represents individuals and their families who have suffered life changing physical and emotional injuries due to the wrongful actions of the healthcare system, government agencies, individuals and companies.

Bruce E. Newman, Esq.
Brown Paindiris & Scott, Bristol, Conn.

Mr. Newman concentrates his practice in the areas of personal injury, wrongful death, medical malpractice, product liability, and worker's compensation. He also represents plaintiffs in class action litigation. He is a Lifetime Member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, composed of lawyers who have achieved million dollar verdicts and settlements in personal injury and wrongful death cases. In addition to Connecticut, he has successfully tried cases in New York and California.  


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Customer Reviews

The relevance of the material and impact on the PI practice area was greatly appreciated.

Derek M. Baroumes

Baroumes & Bruen

I liked the practical and specific tips.

Natalie Lyons

The Cannon Law Firm

The webinar was well-presented, interesting and informative.

Randi Saul-Olson

McKinney, Wainwright & Saul-Olson

Overall, a very good presentation. For my practice, the presentation was relevant and highly informative.

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Hinkle, Hensley, Shanor & Martin

Great content, including everyday examples, provided by each speaker.

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Duncan Firm

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