A witness statement is a brief summary of a witness's testimony. It is used either in the process of discovery as a preview of the full testimony or as the actual testimony in court. In the United States, litigants usually forgo witness statements in favor of a more extensive and direct deposition of each potential witness prior to the trial date.
Write a heading in an upper corner of the page. The heading should include the name of the party for whom the statement is being prepared, the date of the witness statement and the case number.
Read More: How to Prepare a Will-Say Statement
At the center of the page, write the name of the case. This is typically written as the name of the claimant or plaintiff, identified as such, followed by the word "and," then the name of the defendant, identified as the defendant.
Identify yourself and your involvement with the case in the opening paragraph. Give your name, your address, your age and your occupation. Then describe your relation to the defendant or to the scene of the alleged crime.
Begin describing the events that you have witnessed. For added clarity, break down the events into a numbered sequence.
Include as many exact details as possible. These include dates, times, dollar amounts, makes and models of vehicles, time and speed estimates, distance from objects, and personal descriptions.
Reproduce conversations in the first person, using direct quotation, to the best of your ability.
Do not write about events that you did not directly see, hear or otherwise perceive yourself.
At the end of your statement, verify it by writing, "I believe the facts stated in this letter are true to the best of my knowledge."
J.D. Richards has worked as a writer and journalist since 2005. He has written for various publications, including the alt-weekly "Creative Loafing" in Florida as well as Manhattan's "New York Press" and "Blackbook Magazine." He graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in journalism.