Types of Witnesses – Character-Reputation Witness
Character witnesses play a crucial supporting role in a wide variety of criminal and civil trials. Unlike expert witnesses or eyewitnesses, character witnesses provide important information about the background and character of legal defendants. An attorney may retain a character witness to recount a specific story that supports the positive narrative that has been built around a defendant. Alternatively, a character witness may offer a far-ranging primer on the defendant’s trustworthiness, honor, and decency.
Regardless of the scope of the witness’s testimony, he or she usually must provide background information and “character support” that has relevance to the legal matter at hand. For instance, a witness who has been called to support the character of a witness who has been accused of a financial crime might not wish to waste time with a discussion of the individual’s patronage of animal welfare charities. Instead, he or she should discuss situations in which the defendant demonstrated honesty, trustworthiness, and accountability. Although character witnesses must suggest and recount such anecdotes, it is the responsibility of their supervising attorney to shape and strengthen the underlying arguments.
It should be obvious that deposition training is crucial to the success of individual character witnesses. Since these witnesses are often personally involved with the defendants that they support, their emotions or biases often lead them to overstep their duties and make misleading or unhelpful statements. Over the years, countless legal arguments have been undermined by character witnesses who volunteered too much information or made contradictory statements that called their credibility into question.
The Perfect Witness assuages these and other concerns about character witnesses’ depositions. Our “simple, effective, and efficient” online witness training video provides inexperienced witnesses with clear instructions and guidance that can help them craft believable, professional testimony. Since character witnesses are keepers of a specific narrative about their defendants, The Perfect Witness demonstrates the importance of sticking to a specific story without providing unnecessary or unhelpful information.
Moreover, The Perfect Witness shows character witnesses how to win favor by appearing trustworthy and unbiased. In addition to maintaining credibility and truthfullness, our video helps character witnesses provide straightforward answers that leave little room for interpretation during and after the deposition’s conclusion.
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