There is no order but chronological order (III)

The rule about putting documents into chronological order also applies to witness statements. Begin the story at the beginning and go on to the end. This makes it much easier for the tribunal to understand what you are trying to say.

2 Replies to “There is no order but chronological order (III)”

  1. I am interested in this rule, as I have a tribunal claim which is quite complicated and which has many strands. I feel that it will be almost impossible for the tribunal to see the issues clearly if it’s presented in purely chronological order. I think it might work if each strand is explained in chronological order; otherwise it’s going to be a tedious string of events from which it will be very hard to draw out the important points.

    Wonder what I should do…

  2. This is a fair point. Sometimes in the witness statement there is no sensible alternative to finishing one strand of a story before you embark on another, even if that means that you have to go back in time a bit when you switch to a new subject. It’s not ideal, but it’s better than telling a hopelessly fragmented story in strict chronological order.

    There are various things you can do to reduce confusion. Present each strand in careful chronological order. Use a heading for each strand, and put the date range that you’re going to be talking about in the heading: e.g. ‘Flexible working requests: July 2007 – December 2008.’ Put dates in wherever you can. Don’t say ‘a few days later’ unless you’ve mentioned a date in the same paragraph. Don’t ever say ‘a few weeks later’: if you don’t know the exact date, say something like ‘in about late April or early May 2009…’ Provide a complete chronology or timeline alongside your statement.

    If you do all this, both your story and the underlying chronology should be reasonably clear.

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