Witness Development

CCA works in concert with attorneys to prepare witnesses to present powerful testimony and respond to difficult questions under cross-examination. Rather than viewing witness preparation as a tool to minimize the damage that a witness can do on the stand, we develop witnesses that are valuable team members, and strong advocates for the case.

We approach every preparation assignment with the goal that a witness should be prepared to effectively handle any issues that come up under cross-examination. For a CCA-prepared witness, there should be no surprises on the stand.

We begin every assignment with an intense research phase. During on-site research interviews, CCA consultants assess troublesome and witness-specific case issues, case strengths, case strategy, and the peculiarities of your judge, regulator, or jury.

Following this initial research work, we prepare witnesses for a trial or regulatory hearing in 2-4 multi-day lab sessions scheduled a few weeks apart. If your organization is not facing a current case, a Phase I multi-day session can be used to develop or screen future witnesses.

Highlights of these lab sessions include:

  • Development of core witness skills for testimony and cross-examination
  • Identification of strong and vulnerable case points
  • Review case strategy to understand the overall case message and where each witness fits
  • Define witness domains and establish boundaries of witness responsibilities
  • Development of one-page CCA issue cards for each case issue
  • Practice developing and delivering solid answers under grueling questioning
  • Practice staying cooperative and helpful under fire
  • Work on dealing with hostile cross-examination
  • Prepare for the toughest questions likely to come up, and identify “silver bullets”
  • Review of when and how to “pass” a question to the appropriate witness
  • Development of powerful visuals for the courtroom and hearings
  • On-camera cross-examination and mock trial/hearing

CCA has worked on more than 400 civil cases and regulatory hearings, with individual cases having up to $9 billion at stake. In addition, our team has prepared numerous CEOs to testify before outwardly hostile Congressional committees.

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