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Legal Talent
Registered Agent (RASI)

The Essentials of Video Depositions

  • March
  • 21
  • 2019
  • Dianna Ray, Video Manager

What is a Video Deposition?

As technology advances, the legal industry must harness these technologies to empower their cases and captivate their juries. In this media driven era, video depositions are a powerful tool that litigators can use to hold a jury's attention. It provides the jury with more impactful information such as vocal infliction and facial expressions.

Video Depositions Transforming Court Reporting

Court Reporting is an essential aspect of winning a civil or criminal case. The addition of recording depositions by video has transformed the industry by providing excellent value and greater convenience.

Video depositions allow a person to give testimony, under oath, outside of the courtroom, in the presence of a court reporter and legal counsel. Video recording of depositions allow for greater flexibility, which provides an attorney with substantial savings in time, transportation and lodging fees. If a deponent cannot testify live at a trial for a reason deemed valid by the court or a witness is no longer available to testify, video depositions prove to be useful by giving the witness the flexibility he or she might need. The use of video depositions prove vital for expert witnesses when travel is costly.

Trust Professionally Trained Videographers for Your Video Depositions

Videographers should have experience or a certification specializing in recording legal video. Experienced staff take the proper precautions and utilize professional equipment when filming a deposition.

On the day of filming, the videographer arrives early to set up for the day of filming. Attorneys rely on that person to have professional-grade cameras and multiple microphones to alleviate any possible equipment malfunctions and to produce a clear image and audio. The camera shot consist of the witness as the focus, with their head and shoulders appearing on the screen. Speak to your videographer before the deposition if you have questions about camera placement. Videographers may suggest different set-ups to eliminate any distractions in the background of the video.

Prior to trial the video may be edited, in accordance with court approved designations, so the testimony is clear and concise, without any pauses or interruptions.  Inversely, the court may also require that no portions be cut from the video, so the video preserves the essence of the entire deposition.

Preparing for a Video Deposition

Video depositions are visual products and thus it is important to prepare clients for the distinctions of video testimony. It’s important to advise the deponent on body language, eye contact, and what these non-verbal cues communicate to viewers. It is also important for all parties to be clear and concise when speaking. With the witness taking these queues, a court reporter can produce a clean transcript enabling lawyers to annotate and index footage easily as they prepare for trial.

Video Depositions are the Right Move

Like most great industry tools, video depositions continue to evolve to meet the dynamic needs of the legal industry. Attorneys and law firms must utilize the services of a company that offers professional videography, editing, transcriptions and equipment. After utilizing Lexitas’ video depositions services, it is highly unlikely you will go back to pen and paper.