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Magistrate suggestions on how to be a good witness at trial.

5621821439_ee898c76ba_mA workers’ compensation trial is a formal hearing that occurs before a magistrate. Witness testimony is always taken under oath and digitally recorded. Other evidence submitted at trial includes medical records and deposition testimony from experts.

Trial can last anywhere from a few hours to a few days. The magistrate will make a determination as to the facts and law. This is done by judging the credibility of witnesses and expert opinions.

Ignore what you have seen in movies and television. There are no fancy courtrooms and spectators are rarely present. A magistrate will simply receive evidence and issue a written opinion at a later date.

I recently had an opportunity to spend some extra time with several local magistrates. I was curious about how they viewed witness testimony and what helps them decide credibility. Forget what you think you know. Here are some trial suggestions and witness tips.

How to be a good witness at trial

Don’t give a sales pitch. Embellishment comes off as phony and can harm credibility.

Answer direct questions. Don’t elaborate and try to explain away problems.

Resist the urge to include every detail in your testimony. Medical records and deposition testimony will fill in gaps.

Be honest about problems in your case. Defense counsel wants to get you upset and expose weaknesses on cross examination.

Don’t answer if you are confused. Ask for clarification of the question.

Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation today.

Related information:

Injured On The Job: A Guide to Michigan Workers’ Compensation Law (Free Book)

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by Vectorportal.

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Author Bio Jeffrey Kaufman

Author
Jeffrey E. Kaufman
Michigan Workers Comp Attorney

Jeffrey E. Kaufman has extensive experience in workers compensation cases and has recovered millions of dollars in benefits for his clients. He believes all injured workers deserve to be on equal footing with insurance companies and employers, and fights tenaciously so their rights are secured and protected.


“Jeff also helped me with getting my Blue Cross bills paid. I would absolutely recommend him and the whole firm. Jeff and the firm did everything they were supposed to do for me and my case.”
Ricardo Perfetto

Hundreds of 5-Star Reviews

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Get Help From our Michigan Workers’ Comp Lawyers Today

You’re not alone. Our Michigan workers’ comp lawyers have been called the best in the state, and our clients love how they’re treated with care, respect, and responsiveness. We will give you the time you need, we will explain your legal rights, and we will always treat you with respect.

Our workers’ compensation and Social Security disability lawyers always put your needs first. Get to know your legal team.

Our attorneys post regularly about common issues related to workers’ comp, including common injuries, settlement calculations, laws, and more.

Injured? It’s Time to Get Some Answers

Don’t let the insurance adjuster push you around. Request your free consultation today.

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Our attorneys post regularly about common issues related to workers’ comp, including common injuries, settlement calculations, laws, and more.

Our workers’ compensation and Social Security disability lawyers always put your needs first. Get to know your legal team.