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.