How to Prepare a Witness for Trial

Paralegal briefing witness for court session

One of your duties as a paralegal is to prepare the client and lay witnesses for trial. You have to make certain that they are thoroughly prepared to provide their testimony when facing the judge and the jury.

While you probably learned how to prepare witnesses in paralegal schools, the actual task is not as easy. Below are some guidelines to help you. 

Preparing the Client

Even if the trial date is several months away, it is crucial that you notify the client about it and urge him or her to show up on the trial date since your client plays a vital role in impressing the jury and the judge.

If the jury and the judge are not convinced by your client’s testimony or if your client appears disinterested or inattentive, you might not get the outcome you are hoping for. Make sure that you client is aware of all the crucial details of the case.

You should likewise prepare him or her on how to handle potential objections. Also, make sure that you client has a copy of everything that when on during the trial and deposition.

Preparing Lay Witnesses

These individuals are not necessarily experts in litigation, but since they are knowledgeable about the case facts, could help benefit your defense. It is your job to prepare these individuals as well.

These people have been identified from your client’s case file because they could support your client’s story and the specific circumstances relevant to the case. You must review and document all information stated by your witnesses, such as statements during interviews or deposition.

It is likewise your job to verify if the declarations of your lay witnesses are true and accurate. Additionally, make certain to ask the supervising lawyer’s approval first before sharing any documents or information related to the case with your lay witness before you have had a chance to get his or her statement.

Working with several witnesses and preparing them for a defining moment in their lives could be quite challenging, but you will be fine as long as you keep these basic preparation tips in mind.