Panorama of Barcelona

By Suzanne Quinson

Planning for depositions in Europe can be challenging for a variety of reasons.  Fortunately, coordinating depositions in Spain is not too different from planning depositions in the U.S.  Spain is one of the parties to The Hague Evidence Convention which permits voluntary depositions regardless of the witness’ nationality.  There are neither requirements nor restrictions as far as the deposition location in Spain, which can potentially save travel for your witness.  There are a few things to keep in mind when scheduling depositions in Spain, however.

If there is a requirement for the oath to be administered by a U.S. consular officer, arrangements must be made in advance, directly with the U.S. Embassy.

Planning ahead is very important with international depositions, and Spain is no exception.   Reporters, videographers, and interpreters throughout Europe are often booked far in advance.  This doesn’t mean last-minute coverage is impossible, but it can be a risky gamble.  It is best to choose dates at least four weeks out. You may want to consider contacting a global court reporting agency with plentiful resources throughout Europe to secure coverage.  If the witness will be deposed on highly technical matters, and the deposition is being interpreted, it is especially important to start the interpreter search as early as possible.  Also, keep in mind that often European interpreters prefer to work in pairs for highly technical matters.  Check with the reporting agency if you are at all concerned this may be necessary, to avoid issues at the deposition.

Don’t forget to look into videoconference or mobile videoconference options to keep costs down for your client.  If only one deposition is planned, this is a fantastic option.  Your agency can reserve the Spain location, as well as videoconference suite in the States, if necessary.  They will ensure a test call is conducted in advance of the deposition.  This is yet another reason to plan ahead; a test call is vital for videoconference depositions and difficult to arrange on extremely short notice with different time zones.

If you select a videoconference for the deposition of your witness in Spain, and the witness requires an interpreter, it is best to have both the interpreter and reporter with the witness in Spain.  It can be difficult for the reporter to accurately take down the record of an interpreted deposition via videoconference.  If you require realtime, double check with the agency to confirm that the reporter can stream the realtime feed to you back in the States.

The international agency can also help with logistical details like printing exhibits and, again, the more advance notice, the better, particularly for numerous and/or oversized exhibits.  Last-minute print jobs are often unavoidable, however, and your reporter and videographer can be of tremendous aid in assisting with those jobs.

Working with resources living in Spain or nearby provides other benefits, as well.  Make the most of your time there by asking for recommendations as far as restaurants, which local sites are must-see in your limited spare time, and the like.  Madrid is full of jazz lounges, flamenco theaters and, of course, tapas.  Live music is a main feature of Madrid nightlife, and with such great variety, there is sure to be something pleasing to your ears.

Traveling to Spain is easy, as Spain doesn’t require a visa for stays shorter than 90 days.  You will need a passport valid for 90 days beyond your departure from the Schengen area, and one blank page for an entry stamp.

For more information on depositions in Spain or elsewhere in Europe, contact Planet Depos International Scheduling at 888.433.3767 or international@planetdepos.com.

Suzanne Quinson - Case Manager

Suzanne Quinson – Case Manager

Planet Depos is a global court reporting company led by world-renowned industry experts. We provide best-in-class court reporting, interpretation and trial services throughout the United States and abroad to U.S. and international law firms, worldwide corporations, and government entities. We have extensive experience reporting complex matters around the globe, including arbitrations, trials and depositions. Planet Depos is headquartered in Washington, D.C. and has more than 50 offices worldwide.