You’ve Received a Subpoena As Witness to a Car Accident, Now What?

A question we commonly receive here at Mitchell, Hoffman & Wolf, from friends, is:

“I was a witness to a car accident, and I received a subpoena in the mail. I have to give a deposition, what I am supposed to do?”

First of all, a subpoena is not a birthday invitation, it’s a court issued document you have to comply with. Once you receive a subpoena, there will be a date and time you have to appear. If that date and time is not convenient it is ok to contact the attorney who sent the subpoena, to find a more convenient date to reschedule. 

Once at the deposition, you have the easiest job in the room. All you have to do is listen to the questions that are asked, and answer them truthfully based on what you recall about the event. 

You don’t need to guess and you don’t need to do any research. Just listen to the questions and answer them to the best of your memory.. 

If you ignore a subpoena the Judge can issue a ‘Rule to Show Cause’. A Rule to Show Cause’  is an order directing you to appear in court to explain why you did not obey the subpoena. The failure to appear at the hearing might cause the Judge to find you in contempt of court. 

If you have any questions about what to do after having received a subpoena, give us a call at 800.719.6160. We are happy to answer any questions.