28 comments for “Things they don’t teach you in law school

  1. October 1, 2012 at 8:47 am

    He threatened the lawyer, on camera, in front of a judge???

    OH LIL’ WAYNE NO.

    • Esti
      October 1, 2012 at 9:56 am

      To be fair, I’ve seen videos of depositions in which *a lawyer* threatened the other lawyer on camera. Not that I would recommend that strategy…

      • Lolagirl
        October 1, 2012 at 10:04 am

        You would think the presence of a camera rolling would dissuade people from behaving badly. Yet, so often, that is not the case.

        I have only ever threatened clients or opposing counsel off the record and without other witnesses present. Much harder to get caught that way (I kid, I kid. Sort of…)

  2. Lance
    October 1, 2012 at 9:42 am

    “That’s my psychic” is easily the line of the year.

  3. Lolagirl
    October 1, 2012 at 9:53 am

    What a train wreck.

    The attorney questioning Lil Wayne did a pretty abysmal job, and I think he set himself up for the sorts of responses he got. The not so-veiled threats aside, I have to admit I laughed at how much of that dep went down.

    • samanthab
      October 1, 2012 at 10:27 am

      Lil Wayne basically says everything you would want to say- but wouldn’t have the nerve to- to lawyer dude’s bullshit questions. It’s refreshing but probably not helpful.

      • Lolagirl
        October 1, 2012 at 10:57 am

        Pretty much.

        If the entire time counsel is asking his questions, your internal monologue is what is your point and where do you think you’re going with this? It’s because lawyer dude is a bumbling idiot. It’s all the more priceless that layer dude got bested by the guy he thought would be easy pickings during the deposition.

        Never underestimate your opponent’s capacity to underestimate you.

      • William
        October 1, 2012 at 2:59 pm

        Honestly, I’ve found that (threats aside) saying what you feel like, being an obstructionist, and treating the proceedings like a joke is a pretty good strategy in the long-run. As long as you know what the line is, avoid lying outright, and say as little as is possible being questioned ends up becoming a contest of wills. If you’ve got the Will, why not use it?

      • amblingalong
        October 1, 2012 at 10:32 pm

        The attorney questioning Lil Wayne did a pretty abysmal job, and I think he set himself up for the sorts of responses he got. The not so-veiled threats aside, I have to admit I laughed at how much of that dep went down.

        I strongly disagree. The reason for these questions is because the answers are now on record; during the actual proceedings, Ross will be able to spin his own narrative without a credible objection by Lil’ Wayne or his attorneys (since Lil’ Wayne has denied knowing anything about the issues at hand). Seriously, the lawyer may come across as smarmy and obnoxious, but he did a pretty solid job.

  4. pheenobarbidoll
    October 1, 2012 at 11:31 am

    Yeah, it is something. Out. Of. Your. Ass.

    hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaa

  5. October 1, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    “The attorney questioning Lil Wayne did a pretty abysmal job, and I think he set himself up for the sorts of responses he got.”

    Yep. The lawyer was absolutely terrible. You don’t ask a deponent cold questions about what they recall and how they felt and what occurred and so forth. What you do is enter a document into the record, hand the document to the deponent, and then ask the deponent if he recognizes the document and then to read the document out loud. Only *then* do you start asking questions about the events described in the document.

    So instead of asking him, “Do you remember when you got arrested for blah, blah, blah?”–to which he just answered “No, I don’t remember”–you enter the arrest report into the record, hand it to him, and ask him if he recognizes the document. Then you instruct him to read the document out loud. Then you ask him if he remembers the events described in the document.

    This is basic Deposition 101 shitte.

    • Donna L
      October 1, 2012 at 12:17 pm

      You don’t ask a deponent cold questions about what they recall

      This is simply not true. I’ve been taking depositions for more than 30 years now, and of course you ask such questions. You’re confusing depositions and trials. I don’t know what ” Deposition 101 shitte” you’ve learned, but it’s very often entirely appropriate, and quite necessary, to find out what a witness recalls independently before you show them any documents, so that they don’t simply tailor their testimony to fit those documents. You can get all sorts of admissions that way, or, at the very least, make the witness look like a liar, which can be very useful later on. I think most of the people lambasting this attorney have very little idea of the actual purposes of taking depositions.

      • Donna L
        October 1, 2012 at 12:21 pm

        I don’t know what you’re a professor of, but it isn’t law, right?

      • Lolagirl
        October 1, 2012 at 12:29 pm

        When I said that I thought the lawyer in that video set himself up, I was referring more to his particular brand of smug cluelessness than anything else. I have another comment in mod (and I have no idea why) but the jist of it is that lawyer dude clearly underestimated Lil Wayne. Which was a fatal (figuratively speaking, of course) and foolish mistake.

      • Donna L
        October 1, 2012 at 12:47 pm

        I haven’t watched the video (the sound isn’t working on my office computer, and I haven’t bothered to figure out why); I was commenting generally, not on the specifics of the particular video.

      • October 1, 2012 at 12:52 pm

        There’s a transcript at the link, if you’re curious.

        Honestly, it didn’t strike me as a particularly bad deposition (not a lawyer myself, daughter of one though), but it’s really hard to tell anyway given that the video is just brief excerpts all out of chronological order.

      • Lolagirl
        October 1, 2012 at 1:16 pm

        Perhaps I’m being a teeny bit uncharitable, but I got the sense that the attorney assumed that Lil Wayne was just some moronic thug and that he was going to hand him his a** during that deposition. Except Lil Wayne totally turned it around on him by refusing to play along with attorney dude’s little dog and pony show. Lil Wayne is clearly rather intelligent and quite shrewd, despite the persona he projects to the world. That this white, middle aged attorney could not see past that persona is hardly surprising.

      • matlun
        October 1, 2012 at 4:05 pm

        I got the sense that the attorney assumed that Lil Wayne was just some moronic thug

        Well, perhaps I am being a teeny bit uncharitable, but that video did not convince me that that assumption would have been incorrect.

      • amblingalong
        October 1, 2012 at 10:36 pm

        I have another comment in mod (and I have no idea why) but the jist of it is that lawyer dude clearly underestimated Lil Wayne. Which was a fatal (figuratively speaking, of course) and foolish mistake.

        No. The fact that the Lil Wayne made fun of the lawyer in the video does not equal Lil Wayne coming out ahead. What matters is the effect the deposition will have on the actual legal proceedings, not who looks good on camera.

      • Lolagirl
        October 2, 2012 at 10:10 am

        Ok, there is no possible way that Mr. Attorney is a racist jerk who thought he was going to get one over on this deponent. Or that the reason he came to those conclusions are because of the cultural narrative we have here in the U.S. of what a stupid thug looks like (here’s a couple of hints, it has to do with the way Lil Wayne is attired, the way he talks and the color of his skin.)

        Noo, nothing to see here, move on along everyone.

        Gimme a break. That attorney clearly thought he was going to clean up the floor with his deponent, because he assumed he was just some dumb black kid. Sure he got his stuff on the record and set the stage for how he hopes further proceedings will also go in the case. But he still made himself look like a jerk in the process.

      • October 2, 2012 at 11:03 am

        Ok, there is no possible way that Mr. Attorney is a racist jerk who thought he was going to get one over on this deponent. Or that the reason he came to those conclusions are because of the cultural narrative we have here in the U.S. of what a stupid thug looks like (here’s a couple of hints, it has to do with the way Lil Wayne is attired, the way he talks and the color of his skin.)

        There is absolutely a cultural narrative, but I honestly don’t see how the lawyer is doing anything that suggests he’s trying to put one over on LW, or that he’s treating LW like a thug. It’s hard to say, since it’s all out of order, but the transcript I read has the lawyer asking pretty standard, boring deposition questions. The lawyer is doing boring lawyer questions, and LW tells him it’s a stupid question. And later threatens the lawyer, which is… not cool.

        I’m not discounting the possibility that the lawyer is a huge racist; I just don’t see evidence of it in the questions he asked. They looked like the sorts of questions I’ve read in other depositions. “Is this you doing x?” “Do you remember y thing that you did?” “Do you recall being charged with z?”

        Gimme a break. That attorney clearly thought he was going to clean up the floor with his deponent, because he assumed he was just some dumb black kid. Sure he got his stuff on the record and set the stage for how he hopes further proceedings will also go in the case. But he still made himself look like a jerk in the process.

        I don’t understand this. Lil Wayne tells the lawyer that his questions are stupid, threatens him, brags about his wealth and status, tells him that something is “Out. Of. Your. Ass.”, claims to be psychic, but the lawyer is the one who looks like a jerk?

      • msgd
        October 2, 2012 at 11:41 am

        That attorney clearly thought he was going to clean up the floor with his deponent, because he assumed he was just some dumb black kid

        That this white, middle aged attorney could not see past that persona is hardly surprising.

        Because… middle-age white men… always… make judgments based on race and age?

    • amblingalong
      October 1, 2012 at 10:34 pm

      Yep. The lawyer was absolutely terrible. You don’t ask a deponent cold questions about what they recall and how they felt and what occurred and so forth. What you do is enter a document into the record, hand the document to the deponent, and then ask the deponent if he recognizes the document and then to read the document out loud. Only *then* do you start asking questions about the events described in the document.

      I’m sorry, this is patently false. I’m pretty sure you’re drawing from movies that take place in courtrooms (that is, during trials), where there’s the dramatic moment when the prosecuting attorney throws down the file of incriminating information and says “do you recognize this?”

      Depositions are kinda different.

  6. Kaitlin
    October 1, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    Am I wrong that the first question, about whether he was giving an interview to Katie Couric, seems to be intended to have him establishing the veracity of the interview/confirming that he was the person being interviewed for the record, as the beginning of a line of questioning about the interview?

    • Lolagirl
      October 1, 2012 at 1:53 pm

      Yeah, it looks as though the attorney is attempting to establish the existence of the KC interview for the the record. One would assume that he intended to question LW further about either the substance of the interview or the circumstances surrounding it.

      • Beast
        October 2, 2012 at 10:48 pm

        The title being “Things they don;t teach you in law school” sets the tone for the deposition. The attorney asks dumb questions for a reason. LW is in trouble from the get go. All the reasons given above for depositions are valid. Not mentioned is the psychological aspect. The dumb self evident questions give the attorney a base line just like they do with a lie detector. What do you think a jury is going to think when LW’s smart ass answers are read to them and he starts the same routine in court? Having been in Lw’s position yes it can seem like they are stupid questions but they give any attorney a good feeling for who you might be and whether you are telling fish stories. That’s called on the job training.

  7. Henry
    October 2, 2012 at 3:16 am

    Ok so he’s suing for being portrayed as having a “high level of recreational drug use” throughout the movie…that’s like a job requirement in his industry, wait not like, it IS a job requirement. Maybe he’ll go on tour with the Stones and they can compare highs back stage?

  8. October 3, 2012 at 12:38 am

    Better call Saul!

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