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Should My Client Say “I’m Sorry”?

As a corporate defendant, does it help or hurt to apologize for past conduct?  Does it show weakness?  Fault?  Honesty?  Sincerity? Well, it all depends on the case.  Just take a look at mock jurors’ very different reactions to two different defendants saying, “We’re sorry.” Juror A:  “They have done nothing to address the problems […]

Why Storytelling is Your Best Defense

The Problem As we know all too well, plaintiffs often have a ready-made underdog tale in civil trials:  David (their client) against Goliath (your client).  And nobody roots for Goliath. That’s strike one against you, before you even start.  Add in the fact that many jurors assume your client must have done something wrong if […]

How Do I Keep Jurors Awake?

It has happened to every attorney that has ever stood up in front of jurors: maybe it’s just after lunch or maybe midafternoon.  Perhaps it’s during a particularly science-heavy, technical part of your presentation.  Just as you get to your main point, you scan the faces of the panel and notice one juror slumped over, […]

Why Should I use a Consultant for Witness Preparation?

Many high-stakes lawsuits filed these days often hinge on the behavior of company employees.  Given growing anti-corporate attitudes among jurors, managing jurors’ perceptions of company witnesses and experts is more important than ever.  Most of the time, attorneys conduct witness preparation before a witness is scheduled for a video deposition and certainly before a witness […]

The Reptile Brain Strategy: Why Lawyers Use it and How to Counter it

Over the past few years, we have heard much consternation from our clients regarding a plaintiff strategy called the “Reptile Approach.”  During this time, we have seen this approach become more and more popular – not to mention effective – during depositions and trial among plaintiff attorneys.  This Insights Blog provides a brief general overview […]

4 Trial Prep Lessons (and a Few Idiosyncrasies) of Great Trial Attorneys

We’ve worked with many superstar trial attorneys over the years and recently asked a number of them to reveal some of the things without which they would never enter the war room or courtroom. Whether completely practical or endearingly superstitious, their responses invariably tied back to two things every attorney needs going into trial – […]

Key Issues in Lead Paint Litigation

Over the years, we have been asked by attorneys in lead paint litigation about the key lessons we have learned in these type of cases.  Our experience conducting Mock Trials, assisting with opening statements and in jury selection, and interviewing jurors post-verdict has seen a few key issues over which jurors often divide.  Whether your […]

Communicating Your Themes: Do I Have to Say My Case Themes Out Loud?

When talking with trial teams, one question we sometimes hear is, “Do I really need to say those words – to really say my themes out loud?” And the answer is: Yes. You really do need to say the themes – the same words over and over again – if you want them to be […]

Who is the Ideal Juror to Look for During Voir Dire?

Clients frequently ask our consultants, “What type of people do I want on my jury?”  This is often followed by a series of questions such as, “Are men or women better for us?”  or “Do we want older or younger jurors?”  “Who is the ideal juror for my case?” Identify Your Riskiest Jurors:  Think of […]

Should Jurors Take Notes During Trial?

The practice of allowing jurors to take written notes during trial is more widely accepted than it used to be, especially with cases becoming increasingly complex and lengthy in duration. In most (but not all) jurisdictions, whether members of a jury are allowed to take notes will depend upon the judge’s discretion. One judge may […]

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