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Writing a DIRECT question:. Cannot lead the witness (EX: You saw him, didn’t you?) - BAD Be open-ended, let the witness answer (EX: Who, if anyone, did you see?) - GOOD Don’t be too broad, have a focus (EX: What did you do in 2010?) - BAD Be sure questions are relevant to case theory

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writing a direct question
Writing a DIRECT question:
  • Cannot lead the witness
    • (EX: You saw him, didn’t you?) - BAD
  • Be open-ended, let the witness answer
    • (EX: Who, if anyone, did you see?) - GOOD
  • Don’t be too broad, have a focus
    • (EX: What did you do in 2010?) - BAD
  • Be sure questions are relevant to case theory
    • (EX: How many horses do you own?) – VERY BAD
  • Make your witness look good/smart/personable/positive
  • Stick to casebook, no invention of fact
  • GOAL: Tell your story; get the witness to talk and bring up points that support their side
writing a cross question
Writing a CROSS question:
  • Yes or no answers, don’t let the witness explain
    • (EX: You did, didn’t you?)
  • Clear, concise points, keep as few questions as possible
  • Be aggressive, but stay collected, calm
  • Can address invention of fact, but witness can invest if so asked
  • Your questions should elicit the answer you want; make your witness give answers which make them look bad
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