National Institute for Trial Advocacy

Deposition Skills: Chicago

June 5,2019 thru June 7,2019
Loyola Univ School of Law
25 E. Pearson Street Ste 1026
Chicago, IL 60611
Tuition: $1845.00


Can you walk into a deposition convinced you’ll get the information you need and secure the admissions you want from the opposition? Or if it’s your witness being deposed, do you know how to prepare them for the experience and protect them from walking into traps?

These are some of the abilities you’ll hone when you take a Deposition Skills program from NITA. For over forty years, we’ve offered advocacy training taught by a veritable “who’s who” of advocacy experts—trial lawyers, judges, and law professors—from across the country, volunteers who donate their time and dedicate it to your professional development.


There’s no better place for you to practice what we preach than in a NITA classroom. Our brief lectures and demonstrations will give you a solid base of knowledge and familiarity with deposition practice. Learn to:

• use the Funnel Technique to exhaust a witness’s subject knowledge

• identify other potential sources of information

• close off avenues of escape

• work with documents and exhibits to gather information, refresh memory, and impeach

• test your potential theories—legal, factual, or persuasive

• deal with opposing counsel’s objections

• manage difficult witnesses, counsel, and clients

• become “comfortable with being uncomfortable” in the unpredictability of a deposition

And for those times when you’re on the opposite side of the table—defending a deposition—you’ll discover how to prepare your witness both substantively and emotionally for the experience while sharpening your instincts.


Then it’s time to take the stage, performing each of these elements in a series of simulated depositions and witness preparation exercises. You’ll get personalized coaching to help you immediately improve your skills. But unlike in an actual deposition where the outcome is real, with NITA you get to make instant course corrections and practice them again—with only your old habits at stake. NITA’s “learning-by-doing” method, when practiced in the safe harbor of the classroom, allows you to take calculated risks and perform under pressure, without ever jeopardizing your client’s case or your own reputation.

After three days with NITA, you’ll return to your office empowered to make immediate use of everything you’ve learned—skills that will serve you well until the day you retire from practice.


Whether you are a seasoned trial attorney, brand new to your practice, or anywhere in between - attending a NITA deposition skills course will give you the skills you need to be a better advocate for your clients. Our world-class faculty will work with you at an individual level, giving you the tools you need to succeed and helping you develop a style and presence that is unique to you.

Scholarships are available for this program through the NITA foundation. Additional information on how to apply for a scholarship, can be found here.


– Course Materials

– One on one personalized feedback from our expert faculty

– Experienced actors for role-playing witness parts

*Qualifies as one credit toward the NITA Advocate Designation


"This program is incredible. I think all young attorneys would benefit from attending and learning from veteran litigators. Feedback is provided immediately and is tailored to your personal performance, habits, and strategies. It doesn’t get any better than NITA." - Michael Sutton, Conner & Winters LLP

"Overall, an excellent course. You are thrown right in, which while stress-inducing, is really the only way to structure the course... having the opportunity to learn in this type of environment is invaluable." - Matthew Murphy, Richards Layton & Finger PA

"My firm suggested this would be helpful and would assist me in my practice as I am now taking and defending depositions regularly. I feel much more prepared now." - Risa Chalfin, Wilentz Goldman & Spitzer

Robert P. Burns

Northwestern Univ Schl of Law
Evanston, IL

See Full Bio

Christopher Heredia

Illinois ARDC
Chicago, IL

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Michael J. Abernathy

Morgan Lewis Bockius
Chicago, IL

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Susan L. Walker

Law Offices of Susan L. Walker
Chicago, IL

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Stephanie L. Uhlarik

Skokie, IL

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Douglas B. Harper

Law Off of Douglas B. Harper
Chicago, IL

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James H. Seckinger

Univ of Notre Dame Law Sch
Notre Dame, IN

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Laura McNally

Loeb & Loeb LLP
Chicago, IL

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Jeffrey B. Aaronson

Chicago, IL

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Lea S. Gutierrez

Illinois ARDC
Chicago, IL

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Robert J. Adelman

Levin Riback Law Grp PC
Chicago, IL

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Robin G Weaver

Squire Patton Boggs
Shaker Heights, Ohio

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Susan G. Feibus

Susan G Feibus
Chicago, IL

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Anne Kimball

Chicago, IL

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Wendy J. Muchman

Illinois ARDC
Chicago, IL

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Meriel R. Coleman

Cook Cnty Guardian's Ofc
Chicago, IL

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Neil Lloyd

Schiff Hardin LLP
Chicago, IL

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J. Cunyon Gordon

Chicago, IL

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Janet Lynn Reed

Just Outcomes
Highland Park, IL

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Lewis A. Check

Baker & McKenzie LLP
Chicago, IL

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Richard I. Levin

Levin Riback Law Grp PC
Chicago, IL

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Michael J. Daley

Nisen & Elliott LLC
, IL

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Lisa L Oberg

McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP
San Francisco, CA

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You may sign in for the program between 12:00pm and 1:00pm on Wednesday, June 5. The program will start promptly at 1:00pm on that date and will conclude at 4:15pm on Friday, June 7. 

The program will be held at the following location:
Loyola University School of Law
25 E Pearson St.
Chicago, IL 60611

Participants are responsible for making their own hotel arrangements.  Please contact the hotels directly for reservations and additional information.

Residence Inn Downtown Chicago
201 E Walton St.
Chicago, IL 60611
Visit Hotel Website

Avenue Hotel
160 E Huron St.
Chicago, IL  60611
Visit Hotel Website

Four Seasons Hotel Chicago
120 E Delaware Pl.
Chicago, IL 60611
Visit Hotel Website

Westin Hotel of Chicago
909 N Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611
Visit Hotel Website


It is a 45-minute to 1-hour drive from both O'Hare International airport and Midway airport to Loyola University School of Law or the above listed hotels.  Taxi fare from either airport to the area is approximately $40.00-$50.00 one way. You may also take public transportation via CTA train lines.  This is recommended if you know the area or if you plan your trip in advance as transfers from one trian line to another are required. The law school is within walking distance of the hotels listed above.

Parking Information

Several commercial garages are located in the area near Loyola.  If you are making hotel reservations, please ask about parking.  There will most likely be a charge to park your car.


There are many restaurants within walking distance of the hotels and the law school.  Snacks and beverages will be provided during the course. 


Attendees are encouraged to wear "courtroom attire" during the program. Not only might a lawyer's appearance have an effect on the trier of fact and is thus a matter of concern for the serious advocate, but it has been our experience that attendees dressed more formally than the usual CLE attire find themselves more easily “getting into character” and presenting a more polished performance. Dressing for court also provides each attendee with more realistic feedback when watching the recorded performances each day. On occasion, there may be a casual day during the program that will be announced on-site.

CLE Credits

All states have different MCLE requirements. Please make sure that the state(s) you require credit for were either noted in your registration or communicated to the Program Specialist prior to the start of the program. NITA will not apply to states for course approval after the start of the program. Please note that if you do not complete the program in its entirety, some states do not award partial credit.

For an estimate of credit hours by program type, please see below.

States Based on a 50 Minute Credit Hour:
Trial Program: 36-75 Credits
Deposition Program: 16-25 Credits
Specialty Program: 8-22 Credits

States Based on a 60 Minute Credit Hour:
Trial Program: 30-63 Credits
Deposition Program: 13-21 Credits
Specialty Program: 7-20 Credits

If you need to know the exact number of credits for a specific program please contact your Program Specialist.


Program materials will be shipped approximately four weeks prior to program's start date from our fulfillment company Wolters Kluwer. For delivery or return questions related to NITA Program materials, please contact Wolters Kluwer at or call (800) 234-1660.

If you sign up 2 weeks prior to the course, you will receive the case file by e-mail and the textbook will be shipped UPS Ground to your address. If any part of the textbook is necessary to your program preparation you will receive an electronic version of those sections as well.

Advocate Designation

Are you serious about developing a well-rounded foundation in advocacy skills?
Prove it by completing the NITA Advocate Designation program.

Be recognized for your NITA training! Achieving a NITA Designation allows you to demonstrate your expertise to clients and colleagues. Upon completion of your required coursework, NITA will send you a letter, certificate and an e-mail with a special graphic logo attached. Use these documents to demonstrate your advocacy knowledge through your website, advertising, etc. The NITA Designation logo will also be added to your Martindale-Hubble profile.

The required courses for the NITA Advocate Designation include one building trial skills course, one deposition skills course and one specialty course. The courses can be purchased individually but we also offer discounted package pricing.


(Total price if programs are purchased individually: $7135)

In addition to this trial skills course, here are the other upcoming required courses in your area: