Outlining a Defense Opening Statement

Ythinkstockphotos-465858364our opening statement is an opportunity to be creative and show your personal style. But as defense counsel, there are points you’ll always want to make; using an outline will help you to stay focused and organized. Continue reading

10 Steps to Impeaching a Witness with Prior Depo Testimony

steps_78288477A witness’s deposition can be used for impeachment (i.e., to attack the witness’s credibility) by showing that the testimony on the stand isn’t consistent with the deposition testimony or “for any other purpose permitted by the Evidence Code.” CCP §2025.620(a). The quoted language permits the deposition to be used to show both prior inconsistent statements (Evid C §1235) and prior consistent statements (Evid C §1236).  Next time you have depo testimony that will impeach a witness, follow these 10 steps. Continue reading

The Best Way to Attack an Opposing Expert

57277978You rarely want to attack an opposing expert witness directly. Your best bet during cross-examination is to use peripheral or tangential ways of assailing the expert’s views. Continue reading

8 Tips for Every Cross-Examination You Do

ThinkstockPhotos-57280447Your approach to cross-examination will vary depending on the “type” of witness being examined, e.g., the hostile witness, the flippant witness, the timid witness, or the sympathetic and truthful witness. But regardless of which type you’re dealing with—which can even change during your examination—there are some universal principles of cross-examination that apply in any situation. Continue reading

What’s a Timely Objection?

clock_92572588Objections to evidence at trial must be “timely made.” Evid C §353(a). But what does that actually mean? Continue reading

6 Tips for Using Technology in Court Presentations

ThinkstockPhotos-498646267If you’re planning to use electronic technology in your court presentations, such as in your opening statement or closing argument, consider these six tips to make your use of technology as effective as possible while avoiding common pitfalls. Continue reading

4 Ways to Attack Expert Testimony

ThinkstockPhotos-502890083You can always object to the opposing expert’s qualifications or the information on which he or she relied, but don’t forget about using these foundational attacks on an expert’s testimony. Continue reading

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