Were you recently injured in a car accident in Florida? Did you file an insurance claim? Are you in the process of formulating a strategy for obtaining all the compensation you deserve? There’s a lot that goes into the car accident claims process, with the number of challenges growing as you reach the litigation stage of a Florida personal injury case. It’s during this stage that you can expect to encounter an accident deposition. Our experienced Daytona Beach car accident lawyers can walk you through this process and explain what to expect.
What is a car accident deposition?
The Cornell Law School Legal Information Institute defines a deposition as follows:
“A deposition is a witness’s sworn out-of-court testimony. It is used to gather information as part of the discovery process and, in limited circumstances, may be used at trial. The witness being deposed is called the ‘deponent.’”
An accident deposition generally occurs during the litigation stage of a personal injury case. However, you could find yourself faced with this situation at any time, so it never hurts to be prepared.
The purpose of a deposition is for the deponent to provide information regarding the accident, such as their version of the events.
What to expect in a deposition for a car accident
If you find yourself faced with a deposition for a car accident, it’s good practice to consult with an experienced lawyer. Your Daytona Beach car accident lawyer can tell you what to expect and help you prepare for anything and everything that could come your way.
The one thing you should expect is plenty of questions. Here are some of the most common:
- What is your name, address, and contact information?
- What was the time, day, and date of the accident?
- Where were you coming from? Where were you going?
- What was the weather? Did it impact the accident in any way?
- What were the traffic conditions?
- Did you see exactly what the other driver did in the seconds leading up to the accident?
- How fast were you driving?
- How fast was the other vehicle moving?
- Were other vehicles on the roadway when the accident occurred?
- Did you speak to the other driver after the accident?
- What happened to your body during the crash?
- Did you seek immediate medical attention?
- Did you exchange insurance information with the other driver?
- Did anyone witness the accident, such as a pedestrian?
- Was anyone else in your vehicle at the time of the accident?
- How many people were in the other vehicle?
- What expenses have you incurred as a result of the accident?
- Were you under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the accident?
- Were you distracted at the time of the accident?
- Were you feeling drowsy leading up to the crash?
Tip: If you don’t know the answer to a question, let that be known. Guessing and hoping for the best is not a good strategy during an accident deposition.
How to prepare for a deposition
No two people will take the exact same approach to prepare for a deposition, but there are some basic things you can do as the victim of a motor vehicle accident in Florida:
- Consult with an experienced Daytona Beach car accident lawyer.
- Review all documents related to your case, such as medical records and the police report.
- Make sure you know what has been shared by your attorney so that you can provide the same information.
- Be ready to answer a variety of questions regarding the accident, your medical history, and other related details.
It’s worth noting again that you should be prepared to say, “I don’t know the answer to that question.”
What happens after a deposition in a car accident case?
No matter what you say during a deposition, you’re not going to win your case at that time. There’s still a lot of work to be done.
Generally speaking, three things can happen at this point:
- Settlement negotiations: If you’re close to reaching a settlement, your legal team will continue to negotiate with the insurance company. They hope to reach common ground to prevent litigation.
- Mediation: With the help of a neutral third-party mediator, it may be easier for both parties to negotiate and compromise. A mediator can keep discussions on track, but they don’t have the authority to make legally binding decisions.
- Trial: If all else fails, your case may go to court. It’s there that a jury will hear from both sides, to make a final decision as to how much compensation you should receive.
Prepare for the claims process with the help of a Daytona Beach car accident lawyer
After a car accident, you hope that you’re able to settle for a fair amount of compensation out of court, but there’s no guarantee this will happen. Lean on the knowledge and experience of an experienced Daytona Beach car accident lawyer to help guide you through the claims process and prepare you for an accident deposition. At Zimmet & Zimmet, we have more than 40 years of experience helping injured Floridians recover the compensation they deserve after an accident caused by someone else’s negligence. Contact us online or give us a call today to schedule your free consultation.