As a result of the closure of the courts, attorneys began to utilize alternative means of conducting depositions. We are now able to conduct depositions virtually of witnesses remotely. Witnesses can be sworn by a notary pursuant to the executive law issued by the governor during the pandemic. Those depositions can be either transcribed and/or videotaped. Status conferences and pre-trial conferences, which are a means by which the judge assigned to a particular locale monitors the progress of cases now, as a result of COVID, are being handled virtually using Microsoft Teams. In addition, in order to comply with the current CDC guidelines, to restrict risk of litigators and litigants to the spread of the disease, case proceedings are being conducted in family cases and civil cases, again, remotely through Microsoft Teams. Anticipating that this will be the new wave of how litigation will be handled, our office has created two virtual court rooms, using cutting edge audio and visual technology. MeehanLaw, LLC is the first firm in the history of Connecticut to conduct a complex divorce trial, utilizing our virtual courtroom through Microsoft Teams.
Mediations, which are refereed settlement negotiations in civil and family cases, are now being conducted either through Microsoft Teams or Zoom. In a recent case in which we are bringing a claim against a periodontist for his failure to diagnose devastating oral cancer, we took a sworn video statement from our deaf client using Zoom and an interpreter for the deaf. Each of the participants were in a separate location.