Cross examination can make or break your case, making it the most lethal double-edged sword in the trial lawyer's arsenal. If performed correctly, direct examination allows the attorney to guide the witness; in cross examination, the attorney exerts more control of the witness. This makes the lawyer's skill at cross examination essential if you are to persuade the judge of your position. Clear and concise, Cross Examination provides the family lawyer with lessons, tips, and strategies which result from the authors years of practice as well as his keen observations from numerous trials. In this concise guide, veteran family lawyer Stephen Gassman explains cross examination as a communication and persuasion contest involving the lawyer, the witness, and the trier of fact. He shares insights and techniques that will improve your skill at cross examination. Topics include: - The commandments of cross examination- When not to cross examine- Principles of primacy and regency- Modes of impeachment- Types of cross examination- Techniques such as looping and the use of trilogies- Verbal and body language- Adversarial parties as witnesses- Collateral evidence rule- The intractable witness and the "I don't remember," "I don't know" witness- Closing the escape hatch- Preparing your witness for the cross examination- Dealing with objections- Cross examining experts, and more
Stephen Gassman is the senior partner in the firm of Gassman Baiamonte Gruner, PC, Garden City, NY, which limits its practice to matrimonial and family law. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and has been a lecturer at matrimonial law seminars and symposia throughout the country.