Seattle Personal Injury Attorney Chris Thayer
Seattle Personal Injury Attorney Chris Thayer
Handling Personal Injury Claims in the Seattle Area and Throughout Washington Since 1995

My name is Chris Thayer and I am a personal injury attorney practicing in downtown Seattle. I handle personal injury, medical malpractice and wrongful death claims throughout the greater Seattle area, including Issaquah, Mercer Island and Kirkland.

I am here to help you.

Call for a free consultation (206) 340-2008

Appropriate Behavior During Testimony

Posted Thursday, September 18, 2014 by Chris Thayer

alt textIn this article, a Seattle personal injury attorney addresses the issue of how to respond to two-part or misleading questions.

Don’t Be Afraid to Request Clarification

If the meaning of a question is unclear to you, request that a more comprehensive explanation be given so that you understand fully what is being asked of you.

When Two Questions Seem Like One

Before you can attempt to answer a question that asks for more than one answer, you must separate them out. For example, suppose an attorney asks you if it was not until your first visit to the physician your attorney recommended that you became aware of the numbness in your left leg. This question is asking two different things. The first asks for a confirmation that your lawyer recommended a physician to you. The second concerns your symptoms. To answer the question clearly, you must address each part individually.

Beware of Questions Designed to Trap You

The old “are you still abusing your spouse?” is a prime example. If you answer “yes,” you’ve admitted to spousal abuse and are indicating that it’s still going on. If you answer “no,” then you’ve admitted to the abuse in the past. Either way, you’re trapped. Your Seattle personal injury attorney can and very likely will raise an objection to this kind of trickery, but you may be commanded by the judge to respond anyway. The correct answer, of course, is that you’ve never abused your spouse in any way.


Counsel for the opposition could, during summarization of your testimony, twist your words in such a way as to change or cast doubt on the meaning of what you said. Pay close attention so that if you have been misquoted or your words slanted such that your original meaning is obscured, you will recognize it. Weigh carefully what you are hearing and inform your Seattle personal injury lawyer if you feel that you have not been quoted accurately.

Take Immediate Steps

For information, assistance or representation in your personal injury case, contact your Seattle personal injury attorney today. Call Chris Thayer at (206) 340-2008 now.