I hope that you had a happy holiday season and that 2010 is prosperous for you in every way.
Entering a new year provides an opportunity to reflect on the past year and identify ways to improve ourselves professionally. In the court reporting industry, we are looking at how to be more accurate, more timely, and more efficient, which are the areas in which we strive to excel every day.
Our agency on the whole, and our reporters individually, are committed to continually raising the bar so that we can rise up to meet every client’s need, no matter how high.
You are instrumental in this. Please let us know how we can help your practice even more in 2010, and we will do all that we can to serve you.
The Heroes of Last-Minute Depositions
By Barbara Lynch, Staff Writer
My first approach to writing this article was to open with a scenario that litigation professionals could relate to with regard to scheduling last-minute depositions: the stress it can cause with the high chance of something not going right.
But I didn’t want to insult anyone’s intelligence by pointing out something that we are all too familiar with: Litigation professionals know first hand how deposition planning can be unpredictable due to multiple parties’ calendars needing to be aligned, along with picking a convenient location for everyone involved.
It can get very cumbersome. The task of setting up depositions oneself, or even communicating the details to support staff, can be just a small fraction of the workload so that when it becomes complicated and time consuming, it causes other areas of the workload to suffer.
Reporters Who Go the Extra Mile
Because reporters who work for Atkinson-Baker give consistent feedback, we know they are appreciative of the work Atkinson-Baker provides them, and they are very grateful to be able to serve high-caliber attorneys such as our clients.
I asked a few of the reporters who handle a lot of our last-minute depositions how they manage what could be stressful situations or avoid them altogether.
What follows are three separate “inside scoops” from our reporters in the field who share their perspectives on how they work to completely satisfy the client, despite working in an unpredictable and ever-changing field.
“I am a freelance court reporter who has been working with Atkinson-Baker for the past couple of years.
“What I focus on when asked to take a last-minute job is the location, how soon I am expected to arrive at the job, the estimated length of the job, and the turnaround time. Any information that can be supplied ahead of time to the scheduler to pass along to me will help me be better prepared, and then we can get things started more quickly when I arrive.
By Paul Mark Sandler and John J. Lovejoy The Art of Advocacy
(Please note: this article focuses on Maryland law and the information shouldn’t be assumed for other states.)
In civil litigation, objection-free depositions are unheard of. Attorneys pepper the transcripts with interruptions. In truth, though, they often make unnecessary objections or fail to make them properly. Conversely, attorneys sometimes waive objections by failing to raise them in a deposition. Here are some helpful guidelines for knowing when and how to object.
1. What objections are necessary?
At a deposition, an attorney is required to object to those defects that are immediately curable–that is, irregularities that opposing counsel can correct at the deposition. Such defects include procedural matters, such as the manner of taking a deposition, the form of questions or answers, the oath or affirmation, and the conduct of the parties.
Timely objections are necessary, for instance, where a question is leading, vague or unintelligible, mischaracterizes prior testimony, calls for speculation, or constitutes a compound question. Problems can also arise with answers. If the attorney taking the deposition believes the witness has not provided a responsive answer, that attorney should object accordingly.
» The only fifteen-letter word in the English language that can be spelled without repeating any letter is “uncopyrightable.”
» Ohio is the only state not to have a rectangular-shaped flag. Theirs is in the shape of a pennant.
» There are no words in the English language which rhyme with the words “month,” “silver,” “purple” or “orange.”
» The longest word in the English language is “pneumonoultramicroscopicsili-
covolcanoconiosis.” It’s a lung disease.
» The words “Alma mater” mean bountiful mother.
» U.S. Interstates that run North and South are designated odd numbers which run sequentially from West to East, and Interstates which run East to West are designated even numbers which run sequentially South to North.