Generally speaking, yes. The plaintiff will testify during the plaintiff's case in chief, and the defendant will have the opportunity to cross-exam at that time. However, if there is a cross-complaint, the defendant's counsel might want to reserve the right to call the plaintiff/cross-defendant as a witness during the presentation of the cross-complainant's case in chief.
There might be situations wherein the plaintiff himself/herself/itself would not need to testify, and the plaintiff could present the evidence via other witnesses. However, this would probably be a rare very situation.
Frank W. Chen has been licensed to practice law in California since 1988. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice for a particular case. This Avvo.com posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, please consult with your own attorney.
Atty Chen has given a example as to why the opp counsel may call pltf. Usually cross exam is limited to the scope of the direct exam. thus, if your direct exam doesnt cover the things deft needs to address in its cross complaint, they need to call you. Plus they get to treat you as an adverse witness and use leading questions etc.
Your question is unclear, but both the plaintiff and x-c can take the stand to testify in support of their case in a civil action and usually do so. You just need to list them as witnesses in the necessary pre-trial documents and before the trial begins, during pre-trial motions and so forth, mention to the judge what witnesses you will be calling and when you would like to call them in order to preserve your rights to call the witnessess you need.
Legal disclaimer:This message does not constitute legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Any statements are made for general informational purposes and do not constitute legal advice. No attorney-client privilege is created by this communication. Attorney is licensed in California only.