Are You an Expert Witness? Consider the Following 4 Things in Your Delivery
As an expert witness, you relay professional analysis of evidence to a courtroom, often to a jury of 12 peers. Your role is often critical to a legal team’s case, offering specialist opinions about concepts many people may not understand.
But just because you possess knowledge doesn’t mean you are ready to win over those 12 determiners. Instead, you should reflect on how you plan to speak with them. Often, your delivery is significantly essential. Be sure to do the following four things when creating your presentation.
1. Who Is Your Audience?
Think about the makeup of the jury. Your audience is critical because those jurors must comprehend and trust your assessment. What is the likely background of these people? What level of education do they have?
For instance, if you are an expert witness finance specialist, you should consider how you plan to get people to understand the technicalities of the field without speaking over their heads. Practice speaking in everyday language or finding analogies or examples that most adults would grasp.
2. What Is the Lawyer’s Objective?
Do you have a clear perspective of how you fit into the legal team’s plans? You don’t want to get up on the stand and present something counter to their claims. Instead, you should fluidly work well with their concept. Review legal notes and consult with the attorneys.
3. Are Your Answers Properly Formatted?
Keep answers brief, answering only what lawyers ask you. Sometimes you may want to elaborate more, thinking it could help. If the lawyer asks a direct question, though, the explanation isn’t needed. Too much could lead to problems from the opposition in the redirection.
Therefore, rehearse clarity and brevity.
4. Are You Listening?
You may be tempted to leap into the conversation, moving fast. Go slow and be patient. Listening is essential in showing the court your courtesy and concern.
Yes, you are an expert, but you still need to practice witness delivery. Consider how you speak and listen. In addition, work in conjunction with the firm to fit their theory as best as possible.