Witness Familiarisation Intensive Cross-Examination

Witnesses who are required to give evidence in upcoming cases may benefit from 1-1, 1-2 or small group sessions to prepare to give evidence.

Witness Familiarisation – Case Preparation
We are unique in offering you Witness Familiarisation Case Preparation led by barrister/solicitor trainers who are recognised communication experts in their own field. We provide witnesses with a tool kit to prepare for giving evidence. Witnesses are given tips about dissecting evidence so they can prepare to effectively present their evidence and to handle cross-examination with confidence. The integrity of a case is based on the substantive content of the evidence and witness preparation is the key to this. Feedback from witnesses and instructing lawyers has indicated that the Witness Familiarisation – Case Preparation has been highly effective in getting witnesses to set aside time to fully engage and prepare for the hearing.

The session will cover:

  • Understanding the hearing process, practice and procedure
  • Understanding the role of the witness to be honest, clear, objective and helpful
  • Effective preparation of evidence before a hearing
  • Evaluating how to present evidence to best effect
  • Understanding the purpose and techniques of cross- examination
  • Dealing with questioning under cross-examination with confidence, credibility and clarity
  • Understanding how to use documents and other evidence at the hearing
  • Do’s and don’ts for a witness and tips for survival in the witness box
  • Giving evidence via a remote conferencing link

Witness Familiarisation – Intensive Cross-Examination
Our barrister/solicitor trainers are highly skilled in providing Intensive Cross-Examination Role Play, using a range of realistic and challenging cross-examination techniques. The role play demonstrate how witness evidence is undermined and compared with evidence in an opposing parties statements, exhibits or reports. The trainers use a range of different cross-examination techniques to give witnesses experience of the intense scrutiny of evidence during a hearing. The trainers use Witness Competency Criteria to objectively assess witness evidence giving. Witnesses are provided with specific tips on the different techniques used in cross-examination and how the witness can handle these. The cross-examination role play is stopped every 5 minutes to give structured feedback. This helps to build skills and confidence in witnesses as they go along and to incrementally improve their skills. The trainers use simple visual aide memoires to demystify the role of the witness to help them give clear confident and credible evidence.

The trainer will work with the witness to remove the blockers to effective communication due to anxiety, lack of confidence, anger, aggression or other characteristics. This assists with posture, tone, speed of delivery, precision and accuracy in language. Witnesses leave with a toolkit of skills to present their evidence. We will give plenty of practical tips about giving evidence via a conferencing link. However a witness is not an actor and should not be coached to act in giving their evidence and thus risk damaging their credibility.

The session will cover:

  • Identifying how to develop topics arising in a cross-examination role play
  • Considering how to handle difficult cross-examination techniques
  • Giving evidence with confidence, clarity and credibility
  • Anticipating and dealing with strengths and weaknesses in the evidence
  • Helping the decision maker understand the evidence
  • Evaluating appropriate posture, pace, tone, pause, speed and behaviour
  • Giving reasons for answers and including any supporting documentation
  • Avoiding unnecessary pitfalls in evidence giving including language and accuracy
  • How to handle giving evidence via a conferencing link
  • Detailed and supportive feedback on the content and presentation by communication experts

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