Three Masterful Techniques for Arguing Damages

Posted by Courtroom View Network on Dec 26, 2014 11:00:00 AM

Discussing damages is one of the most delicate elements of your closing argument. Even a case supported by solid evidence and compelling testimony can fall apart if you alienate your jurors with a damage request they consider excessive. On the other hand, if you fail to give them a roadmap to calculate damages, you risk leaving money on the courtroom table.

The general rule is to ask your jury, specifically and directly, for the damages your client is seeking, showing point-by-point how you reached the figure you're giving them. This works well for economic damages, where you can use directly relevant data to support your argument. But what about less tangible claims, such as pain and suffering, or cases in which hard economic data can't be pinned down? In those cases, there are three strong approaches when it's time to face the jury. 

Read More

Topics: Trial Techniques, CVN Training

Opening Statement of the Week: Beth Wilkinson in Novack v. GSI Commerce

Posted by Arlin Crisco on Dec 9, 2014 12:41:00 PM


The Trial: Kevin J. Novack v. GSI Commerce Inc., et al. 

The Attorney: Beth Wilkinson, for defendant Michael Rubin.

Even when a case is about numbers, it's about people... at least as far as jurors are concerned. In other words, as important as evidence like earnings reports and valuations may be to your case, if you can't tie them to a face, you risk turning that critical evidence into bloodless data and white noise to your jury. That's why it's important to tell your jury about the story the people responsible for those numbers, which Beth Wilkinson did in a case that revolved around a business's valuation: Novack v. GSI Commerce. 

Read More

Topics: Opening Statement of the Week, Trial Techniques, Kevin J. Novack v. GSI Commerce, et al., mergers & acquisitions

Opening Statement of the Week: J. Bruce Jackson in Miller v. A.W. Chesterton

Posted by Arlin Crisco on Dec 1, 2014 6:41:00 PM


The Trial: Miller v. A.W. Chesterton

The Attorney: J. Bruce Jackson, for the plaintiff. 

Causation can be a particularly difficult element to prove in toxic tort cases. Time is often a plaintiff's attorney's biggest enemy in such suits. The decades that pass between the exposure to a defendant's chemical and plaintiff's illness can fuel skeptical jurors' doubt in your argument. In Miller v. A.W. Chesterton, J. Bruce Jackson uses his opening statement to lead jurors step by step from Ralph Miller's asbestos exposure to his mesothelioma years later. 

Read More

Topics: Asbestos, Opening Statement of the Week, Trial Techniques, Miller v. AW Chesterton Company

Opening Statement of the Week: Todd Miller in Chapman v. Parikh

Posted by Arlin Crisco on Nov 17, 2014 9:53:00 AM


The Trial: Chapman v. Parikh.

The Attorney: Todd Miller, for the defendant.

The defense in a wrongful death medical malpractice case faces a mountain of hurdles, especially when the case involves the death of a child. The defense must overcome the jury's natural sympathy toward the plaintiff, as well as jurors' inclination to believe a litany of plaintiff experts second-guessing your defendant's medical decisions. Todd Miller's opening statement on behalf of Dr. Snehal Parikh is a powerful lesson in how to help the jury examine conflicting medical opinions with an objective, discerning eye.

Read More

Topics: Negligence, Medical Malpractice, Opening Statement of the Week, Trial Techniques, CVN Florida, chapman v. parikh

Opening Statement of the Week: James Gustafson in Webb v R.J. Reynolds

Posted by Arlin Crisco on Nov 10, 2014 9:45:00 AM

We open each week by featuring an outstanding opening statement from our on-demand library.

Read More

Topics: Engle Progeny, Tobacco Litigation, Opening Statement of the Week, Trial Techniques, Webb v. R.J. Reynolds