Expert Witness Preparation

Live Streaming Online July 19-20, 2023

An EUCI Program

Click Here to register $1295

If you are unable to attend at the scheduled date and time, we make recordings available to all registrants for three business days after the event

This course is designed to improve the effectiveness of witnesses as they prepare and serve as experts in rate cases and other associated energy industry testimony. The course is organized in two distinct areas; preparing and serving as an expert during the administrative process and learning how to be an effective witness during associated hearings.

During the first portion of the course, participants will consider the rate case and other administrative processes, learn the nuances of preparing and designing successful pre-filed testimony, and acquire skills in writing persuasive questions and answers for submittal. Additionally, initial steps in preparing effective hearing testimony will be reviewed. The second portion of the course concentrates on being an effective expert witness in hearing testimony. Instruction will be provided on the following topics:

  • how to approach direct and cross-examination
  • the finer points of persuasive verbal communication
  • potential pitfalls of detrimental and ineffectual non-verbal communications

The course is interactive and will conclude with a mock hearing exercise via Microsoft Teams. During the exercise participants will establish skills and experience with expert witness responsibilities throughout the administrative hearing procedure.   

Learning Outcomes

  • Discuss the rate case process and major components
  • Identify three elements of expert witness professional ethics and/or standards
  • Describe how to properly prepare for pre-filing testimony
  • Identify important elements of effective pre-filing testimony
  • Describe important elements in writing effective pre-filing questions
  • Describe important elements in writing effective pre-filing answers
  • Discuss strategies useful in converting written into verbal testimony for hearings
  • Explain two effective persuasion techniques
  • Name three important considerations when describing credentials verbally
  • Discuss methods to prevent attacks on an expert witnesses’ credibility
  • Recognize the difference between direct examination and cross-examination at a hearing
  • State the role of the administrative law judge
  • Name two pitfalls to avoid when interacting with opposing counsel
  • Identify important considerations in expert witness testimony at hearings
  • Describe the difference between verbal and non-verbal communication
  • List three goals of opposing counsel during cross-examination
  • Name three methods for responding to difficult questions in hearing testimony
  • State three rights of witnesses



9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Central Time


  • Course overview
  • Discussion of prior experience with regulated rate cases, perceptions and common misnomers

Rules and Procedures for Rate Cases and Rate Case Filings

  • Standard rules
  • Requirements for filing
  • Rate case procedures
    • Task distribution
    • Pre-filed testimony
    • Hearing processes
  • Case Law Examples

Rate Case Preparation

  • Process overview
  • Successful case and team management
  • Strategy development
  • Examples variable requirements for PUC/PSC
  • Doing the essential homework
  • A framework for assessing internal strengths and weaknesses of the case

The Dynamics of Expert Witnessing: Professional Ethics, Standards and Strategic Planning

  • Professional ethics and standards
  • Interfacing with counsel
  • Interfacing with other professionals and staff
  • Understanding your role on the team
  • Dealing with public and media inquiries
  • Treatment of confidential information

Morning Break

Strategies for Expert Witnesses in Pre-filing Testimony

  • Understanding the strategy and goals of the utility
  • Determining your objective
  • Planning with other PUC experts and staff coordination
  • Gathering supporting documentation and evidence
  • Considering time allotment and organization
  • Budget considerations

Introduction to Group Exercise

  • Overview of mock hearing exercise
  • Review and discussion of Case Study
  • Assignment of roles

Lunch Break

Preparing Pre-filed Testimony

  • Techniques to more persuasively explain your credentials
    • Knowledge/Skill
    • Experience
    • Training/Education
  • Know your audience
  • Determining what information needs to be addressed
  • Consideration of the layout of testimony – sequence
  • Writing a meaningful question to support your case and expert opinion
  • Writing a clear, concise, and meaningful answer to support your case
  • Improving credibility of positions

Pre-filed Testimony Writing Exercise

Afternoon Break

Group Review of Written Testimony

Questions and Wrap-up


9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Central Time

Introduction and Executive Summary of Persuasion Techniques for Expert Witnesses

  • Creating and using powerful, memorable language and analogies
  • Coaching and teaching hearing participants
  • Converting and communicating essential information from written testimony into oral testimony

Describing Your Credentials in a Verbal Format

  • Stating critical elements
  • Leaving out non-essentials
  • Confidence without boastfulness
  • Group exercise

The Dynamics of Hearings:  Direct Examination and Cross-Examination

  • How hearings are conducted
  • Creating a professional appearance
  • The principles of direct examination
  • The principles of cross-examination

Morning Break

Protecting Yourself from Attacks on your Credibility and Credentials

  • Considering potential weaknesses
  • Preparing for the rebuttal
  • Learning how not to appear defensive
  • Making a reasonable correction or addition

Bonding with the Administrative Law Judge

  • The role of the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ)
  • How to address and speak to the Administrative Law Judge
  • What to expect in communicating to the ALJ
  • Pitfalls to avoid

Developing a Productive Interaction with Opposing Counsel

  • The role of opposing counsel
  • What to expect from opposing counsel
  • Establishing the right relationship
  • What to expect in communicating with opposing counsel
  • Pitfalls to avoid

Lunch Break

Basic Considerations in Witness Testimony

  • Resisting memorizing or rehearsing testimony
  • Listening to the question
  • Answering only the questions asked
  • Resisting interrupting
  • Building trust, likability, and honesty
  • Resisting argumentation and frustration

Subjective Reactions and Effective Verbal Communications

  • Tone
  • Mannerisms
  • Confidence
  • Authority
  • Understandability
  • Memorability

Effective Nonverbal Behavior and Communication

  • Attire
  • Facial expressions
  • Eye contact
  • Posture
  • Head and body movements


  • Shyness
  • Nervousness
  • Impatience
  • Simple annoyance
  • Arrogance
  • Hostility
  • Condescendence
  • Sarcasm

Special Considerations in Hearing Testimony

  • Forming airtight opinions
  • Staying ahead of counsel during cross-examination
  • Answering difficult questions
  • Establishing responses in known problem areas
  • Knowing your rights as a witness
    • Protecting testimony from becoming distorted or mischaracterized
    • Avoiding testimony from becoming interrupted
    • Appropriateness in refusing to answer a question

Afternoon Break

Mock Hearing Exercise

Course Wrap–up


Branko Terzic, Managing Director, Berkeley Research Group LLC

Branko Terzic is currently a Managing Director at Berkeley Research Group LLC and a Distinguished Fellow at the Council on Competitiveness and a Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Global Energy Center.

Dr. Terzic has presented expert testimony before state public service commissions, courts, committees of state legislators, and committees of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. He has examined experts and their testimony during over a decade of service on three regulatory agencies: as Commissioner on the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), Commissioner on the State of Wisconsin Public Service Commission and Chairman of the State of Wisconsin Racing Board.

Terzic also served on the President’s National Petroleum Council and National Coal Council and is former Chairman of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Ad Hoc Group of Experts on Cleaner Electricity Production.  In the energy industry, Terzic has been Chairman, President and CEO of Yankee Energy System, Inc.; Regulatory Policy Leader for Energy & Resources at Deloitte; Regional Managing Partner for Energy, Resources and Infrastructure in the Deloitte & Touche Central Europe; Managing Director at Arthur Andersen; Group Vice President at AUS Consultants; Valuation Engineer at The American Appraisal Company; and Special Investigations Engineer at Wisconsin Electric Power Company.

During his long career Terzic has been a commentator on international and U.S. television appearing on CNN, International, Fox Business, CNBC, ABC, NBC, PBS, Al Jazeera, Radio Television Serbia, and Russian TV. Terzic has given over 500 speeches and has written hundreds of articles for trade magazines and publications.

He holds a B.S. in Energy Engineering and an honorary Doctor of Sciences (Sc.D.) in Engineering both from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.