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  • Usually it is just to show chain of evidence.  Where the e-mails were stored, who had access to them, who printed out the copy, etc. In some cases you may even need to go testify.  This is normal and shouldn't affect your career, as long as you have done everything legally.

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  • Bugfixr16 wrote:

    Usually it is just to show chain of evidence.  Where the e-mails were stored, who had access to them, who printed out the copy, etc. In some cases you may even need to go testify.  This is normal and shouldn't affect your career, as long as you have done everything legally.

    Thanks for the response! Everything was done legally. As with most any company, email is considered property of the company, so we should be good.

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  • First, while I do work at a law office, I am not an attorney. I can, therefore, tell you that you need to ask your question to an attorney (and NOT the one working for your company) before you sign anything.

    I don't know what your boss means by "sign a deposition". A deposition is sworn testimony given someplace other than a court room. Depositions are almost always recorded, usually via video, and a transcript is made of what is said. Both the recording and the transcript are admissible as evidence at trial. Is your boss referring to you having to sign the transcript of a deposition perhaps? If so, that is very odd. More likely he meant affidavit which is just a written sworn statement. Probably the company just wants you to swear that you found the emails and they haven't been altered or something along those lines. Whatever the case, ask an attorney to look at anything they give you to sign.

    As for your career being in jeopardy, just signing a legal document won't put you in jeopardy. If you ever bought a car or house or applied for a bank account, you've signed legal documents. The only way it could jeopardize your career is if you sign something that is provably false in order to help the company lie in court because you could go to jail for that. I reiterate, talk to an attorney.

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  • Terms vary by location but, it is nothing to worry about.  Typically in my state we would call a written statement of what you did an affidavit.  If a lawyer writes questions for you to to answer or asks you orally questions that would be a deposition.

    I have to do this quite often.  When I have done something for a case (such as download data from a cell phone) or search for emails...

    Basically you will just need to say: "I was asked to produce..." and "These are the steps I took to comply with the request... To the best of my knowledge this will comply with the requests"....

    An affidavit is:  “A written statement of facts, sworn to and signed by a deponent before a notary public or some other authority having the power to witness an oath.” In other words, when you sign an affidavit, you’re simply attesting, under law, that you swear a statement written in the affidavit is true.

    Deposition Overview

    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."

    Oral Depositions

    Depositions usually do not directly involve the court. The process is initiated and supervised by the individual parties. Usually, the only people present at a deposition are the deponent, attorneys for all interested parties, and a person qualified to administer oaths. Sometimes depositions are recorded by a stenographer, although electronic recordings are increasingly common. At the deposition, all parties may question the witness. Lawyers may not coach their clients' testimony, and the lawyers' ability to object to deposition questions is usually limited.

    Depositions are usually hearsay and are thus inadmissible at trial. There are, however, three exceptions to the hearsay rule that are particularly relevant to deposition testimony. The first is when a party admits something in a deposition that is against his or her interest. The second is when a witness's testimony at trial contradicts their deposition. The third is when a witness is unavailable at trial. See Federal Rules of Evidence, Article VIII.

    Written Depositions

    Depositions may also be conducted by written questions. In this kind of deposition, the parties submit questions in advance. At the deposition, the deponent answers those questions and only those questions. Depositions by written questions are cheaper than depositions by oral questions, because parties' lawyers need not attend. However, this method is typically seen as less useful, because it is difficult to follow up on a witness's answers when the witness simply writes down his/her statements. Usually, parties use interrogatoriesinstead of depositions by written questions.

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  • @gilnov

    Yes, I believe it is an affidavit to be more correct (I will edit my post now). Very good information and advice here indeed. I wonder how my company owner will react when I tell him my attorney needs to look this over first before signing....

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  • @Bill6324

    Very thorough explanation! I updated the OP as it's actually an affidavit, got my terms crossed up. 

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  • You are only required to state the facts in evidence. In this case, you are being asked about the process, not the content. Something like this.

    Wrong: We keep a copy of all emails sent out or received by all employees.
    Right: Our archive system is configured to make a copy of all emails send and received though our internal email server.

    Wrong: I made a copy of all email sent by that employee.
    Right: I queried the system for emails that showed a "From" address that matched the email address I was provided.

    And so on. Keep your answer simple. Don't answer questions you weren't asked. Don't volunteer information. If a statement is made ("I doubt there would be hidden emails anywhere."), ignore it. It's not a question. If the lawyer says, "Well?" just say, "What was your question?"

    This happens all the time. I currently have cases involving at least six employee email accounts. Just bear in mind that anything you do for "your side," you may have to do for the "other side."

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  • Robert5205 wrote:

    You are only required to state the facts in evidence. In this case, you are being asked about the process, not the content. Something like this.

    Wrong: We keep a copy of all emails sent out or received by all employees.
    Right: Our archive system is configured to make a copy of all emails send and received though our internal email server.

    Wrong: I made a copy of all email sent by that employee.
    Right: I queried the system for emails that showed a "From" address that matched the email address I was provided.

    And so on. Keep your answer simple. Don't answer questions you weren't asked. Don't volunteer information. If a statement is made ("I doubt there would be hidden emails anywhere."), ignore it. It's not a question. If the lawyer says, "Well?" just say, "What was your question?"

    This happens all the time. I currently have cases involving at least six employee email accounts. Just bear in mind that anything you do for "your side," you may have to do for the "other side."

    Excellent wordage! This will help for sure as the date is rolling near to do so... Thanks for your response!

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