Fire-setters: Psychotic and non-psychotic 

March 27th, 2015 by The Jury Room
There is a lot of literature on fire-setters but not, apparently, on how psychotic fire-setters differ from those who are not psychotic. As it turns out, there are some significant differences. Researchers in The Netherlands examined the records of 124 fire-setters (30 psychotic and 94 non-psychotic) sent for pretrial forensic mental health assessments between 2000 and 2010. They were largely male (107 males and 17 females) and on average 32 years old. The researchers compared characteristics in the records and found these differences: Psychotic fire-setters were older, more often single, more...

A Trial Consultant Walks Into A Courtroom—And You Won’t BELIEVE What Happens Next!

March 26th, 2015 by Tsongas Litigation Consulting, Inc.
If you have spent any amount of time on social media sites like Facebook, you have inevitably seen headlines similar to that of this blog. Other favorites include: “Your Jaw Will Drop at What Happened Next!” and “Tears Will Roll Down Your Face When You See What She Does!” The theory behind these headlines is that creating suspense will result in a strong desire to see what is next, and lead to the coveted “click” that follows. Suspense building is an effective strategy no matter what the communication context. The use of suspense as a literary device harkens all the way back to Ar...

Social Media Searches: Go Beyond the Google

March 26th, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
Guest post by Arianne Fuchsberger, M.A., Research Associate, Persuasion Strategies:  Almost a year ago, the ABA released Formal Opinion 466 clarifying that it is permissible for “a lawyer to [passively] review a juror’s or potential juror’s [public] Internet presence.” Since then, researching seated or potential jurors online has not only become an option, but a necessity. Any additional information on your panel can aid in jury selection and during the actual trial, and lawyers should be doing everything they can to gather information about the individuals who may become the de...

Jury Communication: 10 Tips to Make Sure the Jury Takes the Right Notes

March 26th, 2015 by The Winning Litigator
Most judges allow jurors to take notes during trials. At the commencement of the trial, the jury is handed small notepads and pencils for note taking.  The judge also typically gives the jury some basic administrative instructions about what to do with the notebooks when they are finished each day. Once those notepads are handed... Continue Reading The post Jury Communication: 10 Tips to Make Sure the Jury Takes the Right Notes appeared first on The Winning Litigator.

How big is that potential juror’s house? 

March 25th, 2015 by The Jury Room
Tiny house craze aside, could this be a secret jury selection strategy? In June 2014, the Pew Research Center published a study showing that liberals prefer small, walkable communities while conservatives prefer the more sprawling suburbs. While about half of Americans prefer urban living and half prefer rural life—the split is apparently highly partisan. So Lisa Wade of the blog Sociological Images asks the question for us: “Can you guess someone’s political preferences by the size of their house?”. To which we would add, “or by their zip code?” It’s an intriguing idea. Say you...

The CEO in Litigation: Problems, Solutions and Witness Preparation

March 24th, 2015 by The Litigation Consulting Report
  Read more at http://www.A2LC.com/blog

Trial Tech Tips – Courtroom Equipment Specs for Large Venues

March 24th, 2015 by COURT TECHNOLOGY and TRIAL PRESENTATION
If you were assembling a new trial presentation equipment set today, it wouldn’t be all that much different from what would have been done several years ago. Even with advances in video format and display technologies, it often comes to the lowest common denominator – which is still, by the way, 4:3 standard format video. Most trial presentation providers can now connect to and accommodate a wide-screen 16:9 HDMI system, and that is what you’ll likely find in a recently updated courtroom. Even in these new installations, you are likely to find “legacy” 4:3 VGA connections, to ensure ...

Embrace Plain English Jury Instructions

March 23rd, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  I often play the role of the “judge” during a mock trial. In that capacity, I have the pleasure of reading the legal instructions to the mock jurors just before they deliberate. While I’m droning on about “preponderance,” and “proximate cause,” and making the plaintiff “whole,” I am often met with quizzical looks as the jurors grapple with the language. Some have even made a vain attempt to raise their hands to ask a question. I sometimes wish I could explain, “Look, my point is not for you to understand this… it is just to be realistic.” ...

“We need smart jurors so we should keep the lighter skinned Black guy”

March 23rd, 2015 by The Jury Room
Most of us have heard of the preference for lighter skin within the African-American community. Some of us have also heard of “colorism” in general—a bias shared by many in our culture. Recently, author Lance Hannon (a sociologist from Villanova University) used data from the 2012 American National Election Study and found that Whites in America tended to see light-skinned Blacks and Hispanics as more intelligent than those with darker skins. The National Election Study requires interviewers to sit down in a face-to-face survey with respondents (who disclose their income and education le...

Confirmation Bias: It has to be believed to be seen

March 20th, 2015 by OpenDOAR Blog
This article is reprinted with permission from the 2015 Vol. 100 No. 1 issue of Women Lawyers Journal® a publication of the National Association of Women Lawyers. Further duplication without permission is prohibited. All rights reserved.   By John G. McCabe, Ph.D.   I was at a conference recently and overheard a discussion among a small group Read More…

“Classical music will protect you from Alzheimer’s” and  other lies on the internet

March 20th, 2015 by The Jury Room
This week I read several sensationalized reports of research findings from some scientists in Finland. “Classical music can help slow down the onset of dementia” and “Listening To Classical Music Could Improve Genes Responsible For Certain Brain Functions”. The articles reported that listening to a 20 minute Mozart violin concerto could stave off dementia and actually modify your gene expression. Pretty amazing. Except it isn’t entirely accurate. There are benefits for those who already know the specific concerto—in other words, musicians or music lovers. As for the rest of us, it ...

Do this Before You Approach the Witness

March 19th, 2015 by The Winning Litigator
In our lives as trial lawyers, we are often required to approach witnesses on the stand.  Judges typically safeguard the space between attorney and witness — as sort of a demilitarized zone.  As early as law school trial advocacy class, students learn about the important custom of asking the court before approaching the witness. I... Continue Reading The post Do this Before You Approach the Witness appeared first on The Winning Litigator.

Why The Use of Clichés Puts Your Persuasiveness at Risk

March 19th, 2015 by The Litigation Consulting Report
  by Ken Lopez Founder/CEO A2L Consulting Unfortunately, I have the memory of an elephant when it comes to life's uncomfortable moments. One of those occurred during undergraduate school at the University of Mary Washington almost 30 years ago. Like it was yesterday, I remember reviewing my professor's notes on a graded paper. Burned in my memory is the red-pen-circled-notation, "cliché." At the time I really didn't understand why using a cliché would be a problem. After all,... Read more at http://www.A2LC.com/blog

Look for Increasing Tolerance (but Not Necessarily Greater Empathy)

March 19th, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  A jury's job is to judge the facts in a dispute in as neutral a fashion as possible. We expect them to give a party a fair hearing whether the party is just like them or completely dissimilar. The elderly conservative should be able to evaluate the dreadlocked artist as easily as a cash-strapped student evaluates the wealthy banker. The premise is that, under our system, we are able to look past personal differences and just focus on the facts. But is that true, or do individual differences create barriers to fair and equal justice? Both psychology and common sen...

How Long Should Opening Statements in a Trial Last?

March 18th, 2015 by Litigation Insights
In a recent article, we explored how long closing arguments should be (hint: the shorter the better).  Yet almost just as often as we are asked how long a closing should be, we are asked how long an opening statement should last.  This answer is a little different.  First, though, let’s take a look at [...]The post How Long Should Opening Statements in a Trial Last? appeared first on Litigation Insights.

Anticipate Antigovernment Attitudes

March 16th, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  What is the greatest problem facing Americans? Is it climate change? Class division? Race relations? The sluggish economic recovery? The growing threat of terrorism? The risk of another Middle Eastern war? No, it's none of those. According to a current Gallup poll tracing the last four months, the biggest challenge to Americans is their government. In response to the question, "What do you think is the most important problem facing the country today?" fully 18 percent mention dissatisfaction with government. Views of government continue to get worse. Huffing...

Why Expensive-Looking Litigation Graphics Are Better

March 13th, 2015 by The Litigation Consulting Report
by Ryan H. Flax Managing Director, Litigation Consulting A2L Consulting I am not advocating that you spend more to develop top-notch demonstrative evidence. What I want you to do is make sure that the litigation graphics that you do use look like you paid a million bucks for them. Make sure you’re getting what you’re paying for. Let me explain why. Recently published and widely reported research out of the University of Cincinnati relating to treating Parkinson’s disease shows that... Read more at http://www.A2LC.com/blog

Trial Tech Tips – Trial Presentation Shortcuts

March 13th, 2015 by COURT TECHNOLOGY and TRIAL PRESENTATION
Those of us who use computers frequently in our work use a handful of software programs on a regular basis. A few of the most common applications for Windows include Word, Excel and Outlook. Those are just a few of the tools we use most and know best. Many also take advantage of a series of “shortcuts” for handling repetitive functions. Using special keystroke combinations such as CTRL + C to copy a selection or CTRL + V to paste the clipboard contents takes just a fraction of the time it would require to use the toolbar menu, or to right-click and select the desired function from the popu...

In Jury Selection, Remember Your Math

March 12th, 2015 by The Winning Litigator
I recently had the opportunity to observe the jury selection process for a trial at my local courthouse.  The civil case was not terribly complex, nor was it a high-profile case.  The jury for the trial would consist of 6 jurors and 2 alternates.  Each side would have 3 peremptory strikes. For some reason, the... Continue Reading The post In Jury Selection, Remember Your Math appeared first on The Winning Litigator.

Fight the "Flight from Facts"

March 12th, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  When the facts supporting one's beliefs are challenged, one common recourse is to reframe those beliefs in a way that is more resistant to factual refutation. Calling this the "flight from facts," a new article in Scientific American shares an example: An anti-vaccine believer first notes the purported connection between vaccines and autism, then after those facts are thoroughly trounced, simply shifts their advocacy to something like, "Well, regardless, it's still my personal right as a parent to make decisions for my child." In a litigation scenar...

Red States, Blue States and Brain States 

March 11th, 2015 by The Jury Room
Neurolaw interest has been building for years among those of us who work in litigation advocacy. But what about among the public—those who may serve as jurors, for example? Earlier this year, we wrote about a study done in the United Kingdom that showed citizens there were more confused than intrigued by neurolaw principles. Here is part of what we said back in January: “The researchers identified four themes in the participant’s interviews: the brain is something in the science domain; there was significant angst that something could go wrong with the brain; there was a belief that we a...

Two Different Cases, One Similar Lesson: Graphics Make the Key Point

March 10th, 2015 by Cogent Legal » BLOG – News, Views & Tips on Graphics, Technology and Law
When you’re preparing a case for trial, a great deal of time goes into developing the major themes of your case. Sometimes the case is stunningly complicated, such as in a business dispute that takes place over years with many interlocking claims at issues. Sometimes it’s as simple as a car accident where liability is admitted and it’s all about causation of damages. I worked on two cases recently that typify the easier end of the extremes. Both were defense cases where the entire defense came down to a pretty simply medical issue. Both needed clear visuals to make the key po...

How Valuable is Your Time vs. Litigation Support’s Time?

March 10th, 2015 by The Litigation Consulting Report
by Alex Brown Director, Operations A2L Consulting How do you determine value?   This weekend, while my oldest child was in Boston at a gymnastics meet, we thought this would be the perfect time to “renovate” her room back home. My youngest daughter wanted to help but also wanted to negotiate her fee to do so. I came up with many reasons for her to find value in helping: the good of the family, experience, and enjoyment, but none of these provided the proper balance of cost and value to... Read more at http://www.A2LC.com/blog

What does a Mock Trial Cost?

March 10th, 2015 by Litigation Insights
One of the first questions potential clients want to know when they call our company is:  How much does a mock trial cost?  Considering that costs and expenses are a significant factor to any attorney or client’s budget, this question is certainly a valid one that deserves consideration.  That being said, the answer to this [...]The post What does a Mock Trial Cost? appeared first on Litigation Insights.

Don’t Get Too Hung Up Over Hung Juries

March 9th, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  As the second penalty-phase trial for Jodi Arias ended last week with a hung jury and a mistrial, the word from the jury, 11 of 12 of them, was frustration. "We feel like we failed," one said to ABC15, and the group issued an apology to the family of murder victim Travis Alexander. A hung jury may be a loss or a win. In this case, it's a win for the Defense, since Arias' life will now be spared and the sentence -- life, with or without the possibility of parole -- falls to the judge. More broadly, though, a hung jury is often seen by society as a loss for th...

The Personal Sense of Power Scale 

March 9th, 2015 by The Jury Room
We give you information about various scales from time to time and always put “Scale” in the title of the post so they are readily searchable. This one is a brief measure of the individual sense of personal power. We heard about this scale after writing up a recent blog post and thought it interesting enough to include here. Essentially, this is an 8-item measure you can use to determine the sense of personal power an individual believes they have. And even if you have no intention of making use of the scale, you can look at it to understand what researchers identify as the characteristics...

How to Use Basecamp for Project Management in Litigation

March 6th, 2015 by Tsongas Litigation Consulting, Inc.
As a trial technology consultant I have a front row seat allowing me to see the inner workings of litigation teams all over the country as they organize and manage their cases. A variety of management methods are used, none of them wrong, but not always the best either. Modern technology often takes a back seat due to impending deadlines.  While understandable, this is a problem because organizing your case takes time – time you may not feel you have – and yet the product of your work will be far more effective and efficient if your documents and video and graphics are in order, and upcom...

Update: Being neighborly may require a permit!  

March 6th, 2015 by The Jury Room
Three years ago, we wrote a post mentioning the viral spread of the Little Free Library. The idea is you put a small box outside your house filled with books. Passersby take one, trade one, return one, and so on. The movement, as we said in our original post, was started by a man in memory of his mother who was a school teacher. Surely, no one ever thought it was something that could get you into trouble with zoning authorities. But, yes Virginia, that is precisely what happened! It happened to a 9-year-old boy in Leawood, Kansas. The city of Leawood said they’d had complaints, called the Li...

Reconsidering Your Strategy Development Perspective

March 5th, 2015 by Sound Jury Blog
Share this with: By Thomas M. O’Toole, Ph.D. Regardless of the merit of the vast majority of literature out there on jury persuasion, most of it tends to have one critical shortcoming. It focuses on a vast array of persuasive techniques, ranging from the cliché “tell a story” advice to discussions of psychological principles such as primacy or recency, but what it fails to recognize is that persuasion is only one small part of a trial. That may sound absurd, but it’s a subtle distinction that just so happens to be an important one. To better understand this point, I want to highligh...

Speak Positively

March 5th, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  Language is the cognitive and social invention that made it possible for us to resolve conflicts with reason rather than force. Language begat law, and law in turn begat litigation. Lawyers work with words, and particularly those who are in the trial business understand very well that language isn't neutral. Instead, it puts its thumb on the scale by conveying effects beyond literal meaning. One dimension of the power of words lies in valence -- the association of a given word as positive or negative. Years ago, theorists (Boucher & Osgood, 1969) offered...

How to Apply Cialdini’s 6 Principles of Persuasion in the Courtroom

March 4th, 2015 by The Litigation Consulting Report
by Alex Brown Director of Operations A2L Consulting Last year, we talked about the pros and cons of business development professionals -- specifically, the good and bad traits of people in this profession. Here, I start a new series on the six principles of persuasion. I have long been a huge fan of Dr. Robert Cialdini and find myself repeatedly going back to a book he wrote called "Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion." In this book, he discusses the six principles of persuasion.... Read more at http://www.A2LC.com/blog

The new issue of The Jury Expert has been  published

March 4th, 2015 by The Jury Room
The February 2015 issue of The Jury Expert has been uploaded and here’s what you’ll see if you visit the site: Why Women Speak Up in the Jury Room by Suann Ingle. Many of us have read the book Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg. Suann read it and then saw the recent article by Sandberg and a colleague discussing why women don’t speak up at work. Suann has ideas about why women may not speak up in the corporate world but she also has ideas about why they do speak up in the deliberation room. If you want your female jurors to participate, take a look at Suann’s ideas on how to make that happen. ...

With So Few Trials, Where Do You Find Trial Experience Now?

March 3rd, 2015 by The Litigation Consulting Report
  by Ken Lopez Founder/CEO A2L Consulting I have recently interviewed dozens of in-house counsel from large companies. One subject that continues to come up fascinates me and reflects the changing practice of litigation-focused law. As my litigator turned litigation consultant colleague Ryan Flax says, "they call it the practice of law, but no one is practicing." That is, with so few trials occurring, the normal go-to litigators at big law firms are just not going to trial like... Read more at http://www.A2LC.com/blog

Disregard This Blog: Why Instructions to “Disregard” Evidence Often Fail

March 3rd, 2015 by Tsongas Litigation Consulting, Inc.
Let’s try an experiment: For the next 5 minutes, don’t think about Kim Kardashian. Keep a tally of each time your mind slips and you do think about her, but again: don’t think about her. How did you do? Of course Kim Kardashian might think this an impossible task, but I also would bet you were unable to not think about her. Cognitive Psychologist Dan Wegner famously asked participants in an experiment to do this. The research was conducted in the 80s, so he didn’t ask people to not think of Kim Kardashian, but instead told them not to think of a white bear…though that’s less fun. P...

Account for the ‘Liberal Individual’ and the ‘Conservative Community’

March 2nd, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  Politics isn't just a good way to start an argument, it is also a pretty reliable predictor of general leanings in litigation. Out of all of the demographic traits that we have looked at -- factors like sex, race, education, and income -- reported voting behavior is in most cases the most reliable way to tell whether, as a baseline tendency, a given juror is more likely to favor a plaintiff or a defendant. Generally speaking, Democrats will be more open to a plaintiff's case and to higher damages, while Republicans will be more likely to side with the defense or ...

 The gift of feeling powerful: “I find myself so inspiring”

March 2nd, 2015 by The Jury Room
We have written about power poses and other strategies to help yourself feel powerful.  Be clear, though—you do not become more powerful by doing such things, but it might make you feel that way, which in itself can be communicated as confidence or authority. This post isn’t about how to make yourself feel powerful, it is about those who perceive themselves as already powerful. In short, those who see themselves as powerful draw more inspiration from themselves than they do from others. It apparently doesn’t matter if you really are powerful, only that you think you are powerful. The au...

The Best Time to Conduct a Mock Trial When Media Publicity Is Involved

February 27th, 2015 by Litigation Insights
Ideally, mock trial or focus group research is conducted in the actual trial venire, but sometimes accommodations must be made for unique circumstances.  As an example, while we were planning four consecutive one-day research projects for a large manufacturer, there was breaking news regarding a recall by another industry manufacturer involving consumer injuries and deaths.  [...]The post The Best Time to Conduct a Mock Trial When Media Publicity Is Involved appeared first on Litigation Insights.

Why the Color of a Dress Matters to Litigators and Litigation Graphics

February 27th, 2015 by The Litigation Consulting Report
by Ryan H. Flax Managing Director of Litigation Consulting A2L Consulting Read more at http://www.A2LC.com/blog

Like thrillers? Scary movies? How do you feel about immigrants?

February 27th, 2015 by The Jury Room
So here’s a strange study. Or perhaps an unexpected outcome. We enjoy a good suspenseful thriller but never knew it might be messing with our political beliefs. Wait until you see this! The researchers were curious about how various forms of physiological reactivity (aka anxiety) would affect a political belief about one particular issue: attitudes toward immigrants. So they recruited 138 males with an average age of 22.8 years (men and women react differently to physiological reactivity and it is common to do single gender studies in this area) to participate in the study. Essentially, the ...

Don’t Chew Gum and Testify at the Same Time (and Don’t Believe Every Study)

February 26th, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  Most witnesses in trial or deposition would know enough not to testify with a big wad of chewing gum in their mouths. Only, these witnesses probably haven't heard about a new study that purports to show that, when gum-chewers are compared to non-chewers, those chewing gum are viewed as more friendly, more popular, more approachable, and even sexier. The study involved several pairs of identical twins, identically dressed in various ways, and sitting in identical posture in front of the research participants. One twin was chewing gum while the other was told to si...

Would You Put in a Full Day’s Work for $6? Jurors Do.

February 26th, 2015 by CourtroomLogic » Blog
Time.com recently published, “How Being A Juror Is Worse Than Working at McDonald’s.” The article focused on current attempts to seat impartial jurors for both the Tsarnaev (“Boston bombing”) trial, and the Holmes (“Aurora theatre shooting”) trial. The author boldly stated: Jurors who are selected for these high-profile trials will devote nearly half of the year to deciding the fate of the defendants, all while being paid near-poverty wages. If one glances at the juror pay throughout the states, it’s really quite appalling.  Annual rates are ...

[New Webinar] 5 Ways to Maximize Persuasion During Opening Statements

February 25th, 2015 by The Litigation Consulting Report
  by Ken Lopez Founder/CEO A2L Consulting If you can win the battle of opening statements, you'll likely win your trial. Up to eighty-percent of jurors will make up their minds about your case during opening statements. In this webinar you'll learn the top-five ways to maximize persuasiveness during opening statements. From how to tell compelling stories to visually supporting your key arguments, this one-hour will reveal the best secrets from courtroom persuasion experts. Ryan H.... Read more at http://www.A2LC.com/blog

How headlines can help you pick a jury 

February 25th, 2015 by The Jury Room
CNN just ran a cover story on what they call “Southern Discomfort”. The story is all about the status of same-sex marriage in the United States and the discomfort with it, especially in the southern states.   If you are going to trial soon, it would serve you to consider whether the attitudes, values and behaviors that result in antipathy toward same-sex marriage will play for or against your specific case. The CNN story leads with two men and two women who come from very religious backgrounds and also both recently married in Alabama. CNN explains that same-sex marriage is now legal in 3...

Reversing Stampedes – How Minorities Change Majorities

February 23rd, 2015 by OpenDOAR Blog
By Sidney K. Kanazawa and  John G. McCabe, Ph.D. War and sports metaphors used by lawyers to describe their work neither capture the true “story” nor create the environment necessary to resolve disputes. Instead, we need to rewrite our stories and embrace the ideas underpinning the strategies made famous by great Civil Rights leaders. Read More…  

Pre-empt the Post-Hoc: Teach Jurors to Resist the Causal Illusion

February 23rd, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  The rooster can’t take credit for the sunrise. While the crowing tends to occur just before dawn, it does not cause the sun to come up. Thinking that “A” then “B” means that “A” caused “B” is a well-known logical mistake and fallacy. In Latin, it goes by the name post hoc ergo propter hoc, meaning “after this, therefore because of this." That kind of reasoning is also studied as a cognitive bias – the “illusion of causality” – and a long line of research shows that it is a very powerful illusion. Practical experience confirms that...

Misremembering: Brian Williams and our  distrust in mass media

February 23rd, 2015 by The Jury Room
I grew up listening to the television news with (Uncle) Walter Cronkite and my dad every night. I had a morbid fascination with his recitation of the body count of soldiers in the Vietnam War and silently said his sign-off line along with him: “And that’s the way it was…” and then a repeat of the day’s date. Walter Cronkite reported the news. He had credibility and gravitas. He was a cultural icon in a more innocent time. Flash forward to the present and I have not watched the evening news with any regularity for at least two decades. There is simply no need with breaking news alerts...

Comparing a Market Research Facility versus a Hotel When Conducting a Mock Trial

February 20th, 2015 by Litigation Insights
While there are several options, our experience at Litigation Insights over the past 20 years has identified two main facility venues to choose from when preparing to conduct a mock trial or focus group – a Market Research Facility or a Hotel/Conference Center[1].  Both options have advantages and disadvantages when it comes to logistical preparations [...]The post Comparing a Market Research Facility versus a Hotel When Conducting a Mock Trial appeared first on Litigation Insights.

This and that: Knee replacements, privacy fails, and jurors  advising judges

February 20th, 2015 by The Jury Room
From time to time, we bring you tidbits that we don’t want to devote a whole blog post to but still find interesting. Today we’ll cover medical devices that are not FDA approved, the belief that social media has killed privacy, and a novel experiment in which jurors help judges make sentencing decisions. You might want to make sure that medical device is FDA approved… This one is hard to believe but a non-FDA approved medical device was sold (and ostensibly used) about 18,000 times before the government shut it down. The device was the OtisKnee which was used in surgeries for knee repla...

Check Your Language Level

February 19th, 2015 by Persuasive Litigator
By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:  The image of the trial lawyer that comes closest to our ideal might involve the advocate standing in front of the jury or the bench, waxing eloquent in oral argument. But the reality is that, even for lawyers who get to trial frequently, they're writing more often than they're speaking. Before, after, and often instead of those opportunities for oral persuasion, they are drafting briefs, motions, and memos. As attorneys get used to that written style, it can become difficult to gauge how comprehensible they are. You think you're being perfectly clear -- and you a...

 Psychopaths cannot understand punishment—what does that mean for the courtroom?

February 18th, 2015 by The Jury Room
At least that is the headline we’ve been reading about this research. We’ve written before about the psychopath. They are typically characterized as scary and “other” than us—not like us at all. They have been described as without conscience, and yet some of them are involved in corporations rather than prison. There actually are researchers who would say that because the brains of psychopaths are abnormal—they should not be punished for their behavior. Today’s spotlight is on an article which is of that ilk. These researchers say “one in five violent offenders is a psychopath...