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Sophisticated Courtroom Strategies for Experienced and Aspiring Trial Attorneys

Have you perfected your process of trial preparation into an art of war? Are you getting all you can out of the opportunities witnesses and opposing counsel let slip during trial? Do your juries leave the courtroom wanting to reach the verdict that you've clearly stated you want? Join our panel of seasoned trial lawyers for an engaging day of learning and tactics exchange and take your courtroom presentation skills to the next level of excellence. Register today!

  • Explore the most effective approaches to case theme development and information organization to help in your trial preparation efforts.
  • Masterfully use openers and direct examination to inoculate jurors against the opponent's major arguments.
  • Choose the right form of exhibit for each key piece of evidence and enhance the visual experience to facilitate comprehension, evoke emotion, and help memory.
  • Use powerful summation strategies to distill the maelstrom of information into juror understanding and acquiescence.
  • Make the best use of video-recorded testimony to refresh witness recollection, demonstrate inconsistencies and impeach experts.
  • Review and analyze sample transcripts to learn from others' mistakes and successes.
  • Share your own courtroom experiences and gain valuable insights from your colleagues' courtroom strategies.

  1. VOIR DIRE AND JURY SELECTION STRATEGIES
    9:00 - 10:15, William C. Gentry
    1. Preparing for Jury Selection - Researching Your "Target Audience"
      (Venue, Juror Pool Demographics, Creating Your "Ideal Juror," Drafting Surveys/Questionnaires, etc.)
    2. Preparing the Pre-Trial Order
    3. Introducing Your Case During Jury Selection
    4. Bringing to the Surface and Overcoming Juror and Judicial Biases
    5. Reading the Vital Non-Verbal Signals Jurors are Sending
    6. Peremptory and For-Cause Challenge Tactics
  2. OPENING STATEMENTS AND DIRECT EXAMINATION
    10:30 - 11:45, Simon H. Bloom
    1. Maximizing the Impact of Opening Statements
      (Introducing Case Theme and Key Case Parties; Laying out the Sequence of Events; Introducing Supporting and Damaging Evidence; Preparing Judge and Jury to Focus on Specific Elements of Trial Presentation; Opening Techniques That Simply Don't Work, Cutting Out Unnecessary Clutter)
    2. Preparation Tips for Direct Examination
      (Establishing the Main Theme; Organizing the Order of Testimony; Preparing Witnesses; Formulating Effective Questions)
    3. Areas of Direct Examination
      (Specific Approaches to Impeachment, Fact Testimony, Expert Testimony, Causation, Liability, Damages, Foundation, etc.)
    4. Persuasive Witness Testimony - How to:
      1. Develop the Story and Make it Interesting
      2. Integrate a Theme
      3. Adjust to the Specific Audience
      4. Limit the Scope
      5. Handle and Introduce Exhibits
      6. Authenticate Documents
      7. Humanize Your Witness
      8. Anticipate and Neutralize Cross-Examination
    5. Is Interim Commentary Allowed? How to Use it Well
  3. CROSS-EXAMINATION AND REDIRECT - FOCUS ON EXPERTS AND EVIDENCE
    11:45 - 1:00, Simon H. Bloom
    1. Advanced Uses of Basic Cross-Exam Tools: Bias, Opportunity to Observe, Inconsistency, etc.
    2. Tips for Cross-Examining Difficult Lay Witnesses
    3. Opposing Experts in the Courtroom - Setting Up the Motion to Strike
      1. Timing/Sequence
      2. Phrasing
      3. Detailed Facts
      4. Psychological Components
      5. Advanced Techniques for Getting an Expert Disqualified
    4. Making and Responding to Objections
    5. Relevancy Issues
    6. Addressing Hearsay
    7. Redirect Examination - Taking Advantage of the Often-Overlooked Resource
  4. EFFECTIVE EXHIBITS AND COURTROOM TECHNOLOGY
    2:00 - 3:00, Charles Hoffecker
    1. Overcoming Fear and Confronting Technology
    2. Preparing for the Digital Trial
      1. Digital Case Storage and Organization
      2. Authentication of Documents
      3. Document/Exhibit Organization
      4. Preparing the Courtroom and Conditioning the Jury
      5. Blending Technology Use Into Your Presentation for Seamless Delivery
    3. Choosing the Right Method and Form of Exhibit
      (Physical vs. Image; Actual vs. Demonstrative; Budget; Setting; Venue; Subject Matter; Order of Proof; Presenter's Style and Preferences; Comfort Level With Technology)
    4. Does Each of Your Exhibits Pass the 8-Point Test?
    5. What can the Opposing Counsel do with the Evidence I Introduce?
    6. Video Depositions (Prior Testimony)
      1. Advantages and Pitfalls
      2. When to Use
      3. Rules of Completeness
      4. Objections
      5. Fairness
  5. SUMMATIONS AND JURY INSTRUCTIONS
    3:15 - 4:00, William C. Gentry
    1. What to Include
    2. Length and Style Tactics
    3. Use of Pace and Voice Inflection to Emphasize Key Elements
    4. Addressing the Weak Points of the Case
    5. The Verdict Sheet/Jury Instructions - Clearly Asking for What You Want
  6. ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSION
    4:00 - 4:30, William C. Gentry and Charles Hoffecker
    1. Handling Surprises at Trial - What to do When Unfavorable Facts Surface
    2. Lessons Learned from Experience - Share Your Trial Tips and Techniques
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SC Greenville12/13/2017 9:00:00 AM<span class="course-type type-c" style="cursor:default;word-wrap:normal;display:inline-block;" onmouseover="showHoverInfo(this, 'ProductTypeDescription' ,'ILT')" onmouseout="clearHoverInfo()">C</span>1 day349.002039375
SC North Charleston12/15/2017 9:00:00 AM<span class="course-type type-c" style="cursor:default;word-wrap:normal;display:inline-block;" onmouseover="showHoverInfo(this, 'ProductTypeDescription' ,'ILT')" onmouseout="clearHoverInfo()">C</span>1 day349.002039385
ID Boise12/18/2017 9:00:00 AM<span class="course-type type-c" style="cursor:default;word-wrap:normal;display:inline-block;" onmouseover="showHoverInfo(this, 'ProductTypeDescription' ,'ILT')" onmouseout="clearHoverInfo()">C</span>1 day349.002039388
SC Columbia12/18/2017 9:00:00 AM<span class="course-type type-c" style="cursor:default;word-wrap:normal;display:inline-block;" onmouseover="showHoverInfo(this, 'ProductTypeDescription' ,'ILT')" onmouseout="clearHoverInfo()">C</span>1 day349.002039391
FL Tampa3/28/2018 9:00:00 AM<span class="course-type type-c" style="cursor:default;word-wrap:normal;display:inline-block;" onmouseover="showHoverInfo(this, 'ProductTypeDescription' ,'ILT')" onmouseout="clearHoverInfo()">C</span>1 day359.002039395
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