How to Deliver a Strong Testimony

Testimony fulfills an important purpose during court proceedings—it provides witnesses the opportunity to tell their side of the story and evoke sympathy from a judge. In order to build the strongest testimony possible, an attorney will most likely recommend that his or her clients utilize the following tips.

Preparing Witnesses for Testimony

Although a divorcee's statements should not sound rehearsed and scripted, it is essential that witnesses prepare and study their testimony beforehand. There are many benefits to extensive preparation, such as:

  • It forces divorcees and their attorney to coordinate their case strategy
  • Witnesses are oftentimes less nervous about speaking in court
  • The testimony is usually more concise and influential when rehearsed

 

Prefacing a Client's Testimony

Lawyers are allowed to give opening statements to preface a witness' testimony. Essentially, this enables the attorney to set the stage for his or her client's statements and potentially showcase the witness in a sympathetic light.

 

Elements of the Best Testimonies

Effective testimonies are easy to spot. Ideal testimonies typically exhibit the following characteristics.

 

  • Expressive but not overly detailed
  • Concise
  • Personal

 

Testimonies should detail some aspect of the witness' life. For example, a divorcee may describe his or her everyday childrearing responsibilities when explaining why he or she should receive custody. The best testimony in this situation could encompass elements like:

 

  • Transporting children to and from school
  • After school care
  • Providing kids' basic necessities such as food and hygiene

 

A divorcee who can portray him/herself as a caring person who deserves compassion and sympathy is a much more effective witness than someone who appears aloof and cold because of vague or rambling testimony.