The ‘Commandments of Cross Examination’ in Int’l Law
American Bar Association Section of International Law - Grand Hyatt
How does cross-examination work across legal cultures? Cross-examination has been called "the 'greatest legal engine ever invented for the discovery of truth.'" California v. Green, 399 U.S. 149, 158 (1970) (quoting 5 Wigmore, Evidence § 1367). On the other hand, cross-examination in the forms practiced in common law legal cultures is not a traditional feature of the civil law adjudication system. International arbitration melds practices from both civil and common law traditions and, generally speaking, cross-examination is now recognized as a standard and accepted part of international arbitral proceedings. Given that it takes place in a hybrid system, cross-examination in an international arbitration requires specialized knowledge and sensitivity to differing legal traditions. In this program, international advocates, arbitrators and experts will discuss cross-examining witnesses across legal cultures in international arbitration. The discussion will center on the fundamentals of cross-examination, cross-examination before an international tribunal, perspectives from the civil law and common law traditions, cross-examination of experts, including the "hot tub" approach, cross-examination on a chess clock system, arbitrators' views of the effectiveness of cross-examination, witness preparation for cross-examination and persuasive cross-examination techniques. The program will benefit both novices and seasoned international arbitration advocates who seek to become more effective cross-examiners."