Taking Voluntary Depositions of Willing Witnesses in Germany (updated 2021)

Germany is a popular destination for U.S. depositions.  While it is permissible to conduct a U.S. deposition in Germany, there are rules and regulations that you should know before scheduling.

Can I depose a willing witness in Germany?

Yes, taking U.S. depositions in Germany is permissible. However, depos must take place on the U.S. Consulate ground in Frankfurt.  The consulate has limited appointment slots and may require extended lead times. Conference room plus consular fees in Frankfurt may exceed $1000/day. For more deposition options click here.

**The U.S. consulate in Frankfurt is currently not scheduling depositions, but the good news is that we have work-arounds. Contact us to learn more!**


Here is the official statement from the U.S. Department of State website about taking voluntary depositions of willing witnesses in Germany:

Voluntary depositions may be conducted in Germany before a U.S. consular officer only at the U.S. Consulate General in Frankfurt.  Bilateral agreements between Germany and the United States require that the German Ministry of Justice pre-approve all requests for depositions. Depositions taken without the prior approval of the German Ministry of Justice and/or without the involvement of the United States Mission to Germany are unauthorized and may lead to criminal penalties against the participants. In addition, the German Ministry of Justice requires that all depositions take place on U.S. Consulate grounds and that the oaths be administered by a U.S. Consul.  See specific guidance prepared by the U.S. Consulate General in Frankfurt regarding German requirements for the taking of depositions.  When permission is granted by the German Ministry of Justice, voluntary depositions may be taken at the U.S. Consulate General in Frankfurt either on notice or pursuant to a commission.  Details on the procedures may be found on the U.S. Mission to Germany’s website.

Can I schedule a remote deposition in Germany?

Videoconferencing and internet connections are currently not allowed within the U.S. Consulate grounds.  If you would like to conduct your deposition virtually, your witness would need to travel to a nearby deposition-friendly country that allows video testimony. Contact us to go over your options.

Are there court reporters in Germany for U.S. depositions?

Yes!  Optima Juris has local court reporters in Germany, which means little to no travel costs for you. Meet our U.S. Court Reporter in Germany, Adrianell Poteet Sorrels.

More questions about depositions in Germany?

Our team of global deposition experts are ready to answer any questions you may have about depos in Germany.  As the knowledge leaders on international depositions, we have the expert knowledge and advice to make sure your depo in Germany goes as smoothly as it would in the U.S. Optima Juris has been conducting depositions without fail for over 21 years, and is the only firm that is 100% dedicated to international depositions with true global coverage.  Contact us today to find out more about deposition services in Germany.

About Optima Juris

Optima Juris has been helping law offices across the globe find the highest-quality certified court reporters, legal videographers, and interpreters for over 21 years. If you should have any questions about international depositions or international arbitrations, please do not hesitate to contact us or fill out a free quote to see how we can make your international deposition or hearing a complete success.