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Ways to Minimize Interruptions during a Deposition

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You may take months to prepare for an important deposition, spending hours compiling and rehearsing a list of questions that you believe will produce a record that will support your motion or trial argument. While you’re in the flow of asking questions, few things are more apt to throw you off your meticulously planned game than repeated interruptions from your court reporter. Understanding some of the most common reasons these interruptions occur can help you reduce their frequency. Read on for more information on interruptions during depositions, and contact the skilled Phoenix court reporters at Ottmar & Associates for a consultation on your court reporting needs. 

1. Prepare the witness well

The best way to reduce interruptions from your court reporter is for all parties to speak clearly and at a reasonable speed. Remember that the court reporter is highly skilled, but isn’t a machine. Take the time at the beginning of a deposition to explain to the witness that they need to speak loud enough to be heard and to enunciate clearly. This will provide a good reminder both to the witness and to the attorneys in the room to play their part in the creation of an accurate record.

2. If interruptions occur, it’s generally to your benefit

One of the most common reasons that attorneys complain about court reporters is due to the frequency of interruptions. Chances are, your court reporter is as loath to interrupt the deposition or hearing as you are to be interrupted, and will only do so out of necessity. Your court reporter understands how important it is that they provide the most accurate possible record. If they can’t hear you or don’t understand a term you’ve used, it’s to your benefit that they clarify the misunderstanding immediately, rather than withholding their question out of fear of interrupting and guessing incorrectly about what was said.

3. Prepare a list of terms and names for your court reporter

While you’ve been living among the terms and names involved in your case for months, even years, your court reporter may never have heard them before and may have trouble knowing what you’re saying at first listen. Be sure to prepare a thorough list of names of parties, witnesses and terminology that are likely to come up during the deposition. A brief synopsis of the case could also prove useful in helping the reporter to follow along.

If you’re in need of knowledgeable and skilled court reporting services for an Arizona deposition, contact the Phoenix offices of Ottmar & Associates for a consultation on your case, at 602-485-1488.