Credibility is often the primary dividing line between winning and losing at trial, especially in personal injury negligence cases.
In Allen v. Buckner, James Allen sought more than $1 million for the disc herniation he said he suffered in a late-night auto wreck with Dale Buckner. However, Allen's credibility took center stage throughout the trial. During closing arguments, Buckner's attorney, Nicholas Maniotis, focused on Allen's pain complaints, which Maniotis contended weren't supported by the evidence. Recounting video of Allen after the accident, Maniotis told jurors, "You saw the film. He's walking and moving normally, getting in and and out of cars normal. There wasn't (anyone) over there with 10 out of 10 pain, or seven out of 10 pain."
The powerful close and Maniotis' challenge to Allen's credibility succeeded, with jurors delivering a defense verdict.