As mentioned in a previous blog, taking depositions in Colombia can be the solution if you have an Ecuadorian, Brazilian, or Venezuelan witness, as these countries do not permit the taking of depositions. As for any depositions to be taken abroad, the preparation can be intimidating. However, aside from the logistics of getting everyone to Colombia, taking depositions in Colombia is not terribly different from taking depositions in the United States. Below is a brief outline of practical considerations to keep in mind.
El Dorado International Airport in Bogota is the largest international airport in Colombia. Airlines offering direct flights from major U.S. cities (New York, Miami, Houston, for example) include United and Delta. It takes approximately six hours non-stop from New York, five hours from Houston, and four hours from Miami. For a witness flying from Caracas, Venezuela, it will take just under two hours. Your Ecuadorian witness will also have less than a two-hour flight from Quito to Bogota. Interestingly, there are no direct flights from Brasilia to Bogota, and flight times will vary considerably (from 8 to 17 hours). There are direct flights from Sao Paolo averaging just over five hours.
Colombia’s temperatures vary by altitude, but they fluctuate little throughout the year due to the proximity to the equator. Bogota always feels like springtime weather, with cooler days and somewhat chilly nights. Temperatures range from a low of 5°C (41°F) to a high of 20°C (68°F). The climate is mild, generally wet and warm, although drier times of the year are December through March or July and August.
Colombia’s time zone aligns with Eastern Standard Time; if it is noon in New York, it is noon in Bogota.
The U.S. State Department issued a Colombia Travel Warning on November 14, 2014, citing violence linked to narco-trafficking. There have been no reports of U.S. citizens being targeted for their nationality, nor have there been credible threats to U.S. citizens in Colombia. However, certain terrorist groups in Colombia condemn any U.S. influence in Colombia, and the State Department encourages U.S. citizens to exercise extreme caution when visiting Colombia. A good rule of thumb is to check the State Department’s Safety and Security section before travel to become acquainted with recommended precautions.
Colombia offers a number of potential deposition locations. Bogota is teeming with luxury hotels offering meeting space which can comfortably host your depositions. Bogota’s business district also includes leasable office space to use for your depositions. Videoconferencing is an option with either option. There are several interpreters throughout the city as well, so should an interpreter be needed for your depositions, securing one will not pose any difficulties.
For more information on taking depositions in South America, or anywhere, please contact Planet Depos – American Realtime at 888.433.3767, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.