Have you ever had the chance to testify as a witness in a court case? If not you are probably wondering what the protocols and procedures are. Most people have never stood in as witnesses in a court case, and are therefore often unaware of what to expect. So in this post, we are going to share with you some of the top tips on how to be a witness in a court case so that you know what happens and how to prepare for it.
Prioritize Your Subpoenas
Subpoenas are typically issued and enforced by judges, which essentially means they are not optional. Choosing not to follow through with them can be very detrimental and costly to you and whatever case you are involved in. Regardless of how busy you are or how limited time you have, always make sure you obey any subpoenas issued by a judge as this will save you a lot of hassle later on.
Speak with Your Attorney Openly
Your attorney is your best line of defense in a court case. It is therefore important to maintain transparency and divulge any information you may require to build their case. This will bolster your strategy and give them the fodder they need to make a strong statement that may ultimately tilt the odds in your favor.
Follow the Advice of Your Attorney
During a deposition, your attorney is the person that is best placed to provide you with advice on what to do. If they have a good reputation and you are paying them to represent you, chances are they have your best interests at heart. You should therefore take into account any advice that they impart to you and follow it to the latter.
Be Completely Honest in Your Testimony
When making your statements as a witness, you need to be as honest as possible and articulate yourself in a clear and concise way. This not only makes your statement appear valid in the eyes of the judges and jurors but also helps you to present a confident exterior, which can earn your more points during the proceedings.
Granted, you do not necessarily need to dress like you are attending the Met Gala, but dressing nicely creates a good impression and reflects well on you during a deposition. Make sure you are nicely groomed and your attire is neat and respectful.
Things to Avoid as a Witness
- Do not be flippant or sarcastic when answering questions or making your statement
- Refrain from divulging too much information during your statement since this can be used by your opponents against you during the deposition
- Avoid losing focus and remain attentive throughout the session
- Do not attend a deposition when intoxicated with alcohol or other drugs
- Don’t respond to questions you do not understand. Instead request for them to be repeated
By observing these simple rules of etiquette, you will make your deposition as smooth as possible and increase the chances of a favorable outcome.