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Checklist for U.S. Depositions in Japan

Depositions in Japan are controlled by detailed agreements between the United States and the Government of Japan. Therefore, depositions of willing witnesses are permitted to take place only at the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo or the U.S. Consulate in Osaka. It is illegal to take depositions outside of the Embassy or Consulate in Japan. Our experience and staff in Japan enable us to personally assist you with the paperwork and other procedures to ensure compliance and avoid costly delays. Because we are on the ground in Japan, we have access to up-to-the-minute local information and serve as a liaison between you and the Embassy or Consulate.

Planet Depos checklist specific to taking depositions in Japan:

  • Allow 6 to 8 weeks for scheduling due to government requirements and associated logistical challenges
  • Determine whether to take the depositions in Tokyo or Osaka. Note that it takes 2.5 hours to travel one way on the Shinkansen (bullet train) between these cities
  • Check availability of conference rooms in either Osaka or Tokyo. Planet Depos has the most updated schedule. Contact us to check availability
  • Reserve a conference room
  • Select the Planet Depos deposition services that are needed:
    • U.S.-trained court reporter (stenographer)
    • U.S.-trained legal videographer (Note that video conference depositions are not permitted in Japan, but video recording is permitted)
    • Japanese interpreter
    • Local exhibit printing, delivery and shredding
  • Send signed Commission to all counsel, your witness and Planet Depos
  • Apply for Special Deposition Visa. Contact Planet Depos for expert assistance with commissions, deposition visas and more
  • Make travel arrangements
  • Send protective order to Planet Depos for representatives to sign (if applicable)
  • Fill out the Planet Depos Standing Order Form to ensure we fulfill all your needs
  • Send prep materials to Planet Depos for reporter’s preparation:
    • Commission
    • Answer to Complaint
    • Previous transcript(s)
    • Word index
  • Two weeks prior to deposition date, send equipment list for each deposition attendee to the Consulate or Embassy
  • Provide contact information for counsel who will be attending, such as hotel or cell phone number

Travel safely to Japan and contact Planet Depos with any questions once you’ve arrived!

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