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Topic: Personnel management

witness statement checklist
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Witness statement checklist

 

Witness statement checklist

In any tribunal claim, the strength of your witness evidence is the key to success. So if you're unlucky enough to be on the receiving end of a claim, you must ensure that everything is covered in a comprehensive statement. Our checklist takes you through all the relevant stages - follow it and you won't miss anything out.

The importance of witnesses

Witness evidence can win - although it often loses - an employer a tribunal claim. Success lies not only in the content of the statement(s), but in the preparation of the documentation. But drafting them isn't an easy process - even professional employment experts can take hours to get them right.

Firstly, you have to ensure that you've identified all the relevant witnesses; missing one out could prove fatal, i.e. if they know something that could support your case. Also, where there are two or more witnesses, you must ensure that their evidence is consistent (as far as is possible).

When it comes to the content of the witness statement you need to provide certain information, including their:

  • name and position
  • relationship to the claimant
  • recollection of events in a chronological order.

On top of that, you'll have to attach any relevant documents and explain them. The statement should sound as though the employee is saying it, i.e. it's in language that they would use. Ideally, sentences should be short and concise (this is easier for the tribunal to follow), but don't stick to this if it's too difficult.

Once all these statements are in, you'll need to compare them and make sure that there are no gaps in your defence. If there are, identify how and where you deal with it. If something can't be found, e.g. there is a missing document, the rule here is "be honest". This will probably prevent problems in the long run.

 

tick all boxes

Our Witness Statement Checklist goes through all the important stages of the drafting process. By following it carefully, you will cover all necessary points. However, if you are ever in any doubt on how to defend a tribunal claim, you should always seek specialist employment law advice.

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