How to Be an Effective Personal Injury Witness
If you are considering meeting with a NJ personal injury lawyer about your recent accident or injury, you are probably also wondering what it takes to be an effective and concise witness during your trial. This is an understandable concern as many victims are so consumed with the aftereffects of their accident that they are unsure whether they will be able to effectively communicate the experience on the witness stand. Fortunately, your lawyer can help you with every aspect of trial preparation.
What Are the Best Practices When Testifying in a Personal Injury Action?
(a). Maintain your temper. We understand that the pain, suffering and loss of income you endured are enough to invoke the strongest feelings of anger and resentment toward the defendant. However, the jury may react negatively to your incensed demeanor, which can significantly impact the outcome of your trial.
(b). Listen to each question. Especially when you are testifying during the cross-examination, you must make certain that you are only answering the question asked. Do not expound upon your answer with irrelevant details or answer a question that you do not understand. The examining attorney should not have a problem repeating or rephrasing the question.
(c). Make eye contact and speak clearly. Your NJ personal injury lawyer will undoubtedly recommend to you to always look the jury in the eye as if you were speaking to a close friend or relative. In addition, do not overuse words like “um,” “uh,” or “ah.” Try to answer with “yes” or “no” whenever possible.
(d). Be yourself and answer truthfully. One of the most maligning witness behaviors is constant glances to your NJ personal injury lawyer before answering each question. You may have purely honest motives, but the jury may interpret this as insincerity. Just be yourself on the stand and answer each question based on your personal experience. You know your case better than anyone and if you do not know the answer to a particular question, simply state that you are unsure.
(e). Do not exaggerate your claim. Let the evidence speak for itself. Jurors are quickly turned off by a witness, especially the plaintiff himself, who is clearly expanding upon clear facts or exaggerating events beyond the truth.
Need a Lawyer?
If you are considering commencing a personal injury claim, contact NJ personal injury lawyer Gerald Clark today at (877)-841-8855.