How The Demeanor Of A Witness Can Affect Your Injury Case

Having a witness for your personal injury case can go a great length in strengthening your claims. However, the demeanor of the witness also determines how much their testimony contributes to your case. Below are some of the ways in which the demeanor of your witness can affect your case.


A cooperative witness is a good witness because they will testify fully without expecting any favors or trying to carry their own private agenda. The witness will meet with you when necessary, fill out any forms, give testimony when needed, and appear in court when needed. Your attorney will also find it easy to prepare such a witness for their court appearance.


A hostile witness is someone who has purposefully set out to frustrate your case. Maybe the witness has a hidden agenda or they are just a difficult person by nature. Such a witness can lie, refuse to cooperate with you or your attorney, or let you down at the least expected time. Maybe you represent an organization or a demographic that the witness distrusts or plainly just does not like.


A shy witness is not necessarily bad, but they can give you a hard time. Maybe the witness distrusts the legal system or the police, and they need to be convinced of the need to testify on your behalf. You need to be careful with this witness, handle them with kid gloves, and prepare them thoroughly. Don't forget that a shy witness might not volunteer information so you may have to ask them a lot of questions and ask for clarifications.


A fearful witness wants to help you, but they fear the consequences of their actions. Maybe they think the defendant is powerful and would hurt them if they revealed damaging information. This might be the case if the defendant is in a powerful position with respect to the witness. For example, an employee might be reluctant to testify against their employer for fear of retribution (real or imagined).


A disinterested witness doesn't have anything against you; they just don't want to 'bother' testifying. They may talk when they like and disappear when they like. They want to be cajoled into testifying and may execrate their importance. Such witnesses might not help you much, but you will have no option but to plead your case to them if you don't have an alternative witness with comparable testimony.

Your witnesses may need some help if they are to support you to the fullest. A personal injury attorney can help you prepare the witnesses. Contact your lawyer to discover more about the different types of witnesses and what you need to know for your case.