Cross Examination at Trial: Strategies for the Deposition

59 Pages Posted: 21 Jun 2012

See all articles by Gary S. Gildin

Gary S. Gildin

Pennsylvania State University, Dickinson Law

Date Written: June 20, 2012


The Vanishing Trial has resulted in the morphing of civil trial lawyers into litigators. Without experience in the challenge of cross-examining witnesses, the advocate cannot zealously represent the client should the case proceed to trial. Equally importantly, the litigator cannot gain the skills necessary to conduct pretrial depositions effectively, thereby compromising the overwhelming majority of clients whose cases are resolved shy of trial.

There is a legion of excellent writing on the art of cross-examination at trial. There also is a burgeoning literature on taking and defending depositions. However, these resources do not systematically explain the relationship between the two skills. To succeed in cross-examination in the courtroom, it is necessary that counsel have properly conducted the deposition in the conference room. This article details how each of the core tactics of cross-examination at trial dictates particular techniques that must be executed at the deposition.

Suggested Citation

Gildin, Gary S., Cross Examination at Trial: Strategies for the Deposition (June 20, 2012). American Journl of Trial Advocacy, Vol. 35:3, Spring 2012, Penn State Law Research Paper No. 9-2012, Available at SSRN:

Gary S. Gildin (Contact Author)

Pennsylvania State University, Dickinson Law ( email )

150 S College St
Carlisle, PA 17013
United States

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