Filming during an examination for discovery is becoming a popular practice and lawyers can definitely help with the process. It is a natural tendency for witnesses to be insecure in front of a camera, but given the experience a lawyer has, they can aid in making the process effortless.
Here are a few areas lawyers should pay attention to:
The main focus will be on the witness’ face, and any expression that distracts the jury or court professionals like eye-rolling or an expression of disdain while being questioned, is restricted. Politely remind your client to maintain a pleasant neutral expression during the session.
Absence of mind
When nervous, a witness might start to fidget unconsciously or give long pauses between questions. Doing so may influence others to interpret your client as being evasive or hiding the truth. Try to prepare for this, before examinations.
Advise your witness to wear comfortable clothing, nothing too elaborate or bright. Business casual attire is best. Opt for light or pastel colours. Lighter colours are more prominent on camera. Additionally, avoid wearing too much jewellery and one’s posture should be natural. Do not cross arms or lean over; maintain an upright and focussed position.
Coach your witness to have eye contact with the questioning authority or jury, whichever is applicable. Advise them to avoid looking elsewhere or even directly into the camera.
Place your witness against a blank wall or neutral backdrop, do not allow them to be overshadowed by a large window of light. Instead, make sure the lighting is correct for the camera. Make sure their space is noise-free and remind everyone in the vicinity to turn off their mobile phones and electronics.
Hiring a certified legal video specialist
The easiest method to approach a video examination is to hire a certified specialist. They are trained to record according to legal standards, eliminating unwanted distractions and adjusting the quality whenever necessary.
By offering to guide your client during video examinations, potentially you can help to make the process much easier and improve the chances of better quality. Video examinations can be beneficial when presenting evidence to a jury and following these simple tips can make a difference.
To book a court reporter for a meeting or a mediation, or even to discuss a court reporting position with On The Record, call one of our locations today, conveniently located in Whitby and Barrie. We look forward to discussing your court reporting or mediation needs.