by Anna Engelhard-Barfield
excerpted from ABA Section of International Law Newsletter, Issue 7, September 2013
Taking depositions of witnesses in Europe is quite different from taking depositions in the U.S. The Hague Evidence Convention, which applies to the taking of depositions in most European countries, imposes restrictions on where depositions can take place, and whether a foreign court will be involved. Germany has signed the Convention, but has entered special reservations for the taking of depositions in Germany. For example, voluntary depositions must be taken at the U.S. Consulate in Frankfurt, but an unwilling witness must be examined by a German judge in the courtroom. In Germany, only non-parties testify as witnesses and the scope of questioning is very narrow.
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