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 In-person deposition guide
Posted by  VT_Syrup on 3/13/19 8:34am

I was called about administering oaths for an in-person deposition (no telephones involved). The deposition got cancelled, but before it was cancelled, I read the law in my state and it appears it could potentially be a fair bit more complicated than just administering an oath.

The parties can, IF THEY WANT TO, stipulate to variations in procedure, which could allow the notary to merely administer the oath. But IF THEY DON'T, it looks like the notary would need to make a short statement at the beginning (notary's name and address, date and location, names of persons present), administer oaths, sit through the whole thing, and make a short statement at the end. The notary would be acting as the officer before whom the deposition was held.

Does anyone have any practical guides for depositions from the point of view of the notary? There are guides online for lawyers, suggesting what kind of questions they should ask, and guides for witnesses suggesting that they get a lawyer and follow the lawyer's advice, but I couldn't find anything for the notary.

I'm concerned there may be gotchas that aren't apparent from reading the law. On the other hand, it seems like an opportunity. There are court reporters over the border in NY who come to VT, but can't administer oaths in VT, so they call in a VT notary. It isn't clear why one of the lawyers, who would also be a notary, couldn't administer the oath, but the fellow from the company that arranges these things seemed to think outside notaries were generally called in.

Vermont Court Rules are at https://advance.lexis.com/container?config=00JABlZjg3NDE5OS1mMmJlLTQ3MWMtYjAxYy1lYjc3NmM1ZTljOGUKAFBvZENhdGFsb2cij1bfBuS6Ez3oYHkLGCJ1&crid=c69f5526-014c-41fb-9919-fa985f9e7110&prid=f1d1149b-9319-466b-aba2-3d32bebe8cf8

On right side of page click "Vermont Court Rules". Rules about depositions are under RULES OF CIVIL PROCEDURE -> DEPOSITIONS AND DISCOVERY -> Rule 26 through 31.
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