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The Litigation Consulting Report (A2L Consulting) – The Red Well

The Litigation Consulting Report (A2L Consulting)

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8 Strategies When Winning Means Losing the Least Money

April 13th, 2017|

by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting The best defense lawyers come to A2L with their toughest cases. This means that some of the cases that arrive on our doorstep are essentially unwinnable. Although the trial team won't often directly say so, they will say, “The client considers a plaintiff's verdict for anything between zero dollars and XYZ dollars a win." In these cases, typically, there is no good settlement position. Our company is highly focused on winning cases. We just love doing it, and it is central to our culture. So it can be a tough adjustment for our team and our

Visual Storytelling at Trial: The Judges’ Perspective

April 10th, 2017|

by Tony KlapperManaging Director, Litigation ConsultingA2L Consulting I recently had the opportunity to make a presentation at a federal judges’ conference in New Jersey that brought together judges and lawyers from that state. About 300 lawyers attended, as did about two dozen federal judges. The subject of my presentation was storytelling and its role in trials. After my presentation was over, I informally polled the judges in the room on their views concerning the importance of visuals at trial and the role of storytelling. Every single one of the judges, with the possible exception of one bankruptcy judge, indicated that

At Trial, Prepare for the Best But Expect the Worst

April 3rd, 2017|

by Tony KlapperManaging Director, Litigation ConsultingA2L Consulting We spend a lot of time in this blog describing the best practices to use in persuading a jury or judge, explaining why they work, and encouraging lawyers to use them. But what if your best-laid plans go astray? Even the most exhaustive set of trial preparations can go unexpectedly wrong. Hardware can fail, judges can issue unpredictable rulings, courtroom technology can prove incompatible. Our advice is to always double check everything and always have a backup plan. Do you have a PowerPoint that you need to use at trial? Make sure that the

My Case Is Not Visual – So Why Do I Need Litigation Graphics?

March 31st, 2017|

by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting Over the past three decades I've heard hundreds of lawyers say, “I won't need many graphics because my case is not very visual.” Usually, that's followed up with “It's really a case about documents” or “It’s a dispute over who said what,” or “It’s just about what someone's actions were.” Fortunately, there’s a clear and straightforward answer to these objections: What drives the need for visuals in a case is not the underlying subject matter. It’s your audience's need to see things as well as hear them. In effect, every case is a visual case today. So instead

Top 10 Litigation Articles So Far This Year

March 28th, 2017|

by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting As the first quarter of 2017 comes to an end, I have had the occasion to reflect on the origins and the success of the online publication that you are reading, The Litigation Consulting Report. In six years, I've watched as this publication grew from nothing at all to a subscription list that includes more than 9,000 members of the legal community (here's a free subscription link: http://a2.lc/trialtips). I am pleased and amazed to see that there are more than 300,000 visits to this blog annually. Periodically, we try to help organize the articles we publish

3 Excellent Ways to Use “Top-Bottom” Timelines in Trial

March 23rd, 2017|

by Tony KlapperManaging Director, Litigation ConsultingA2L Consulting Timelines are a frequently used, time-honored trial technique that we have discussed in these pages more than once. Since human beings like to focus on a story – what happened first, what happened next, and so on – timelines have the power to summarize, in a simple and straightforward way, the entire narrative of a case. But not all timeline graphics are created equal. Here are three ways to use what we call “top-bottom” timelines that most successfully take advantage of their power to persuade. In the first type of “top-bottom” timeline, the chronological

The Key Elements of a Good Narrative – at Trial or Anywhere Else

March 21st, 2017|

by Tony KlapperManaging Director, Litigation ConsultingA2L Consulting Here in these pages, we often talk about storytelling as a fundamental principle of successful trial work. But what are the elements of a good story? A good story is one that will be retold – it’s one that begs to be retold. Just as our ancestors told and retold the fundamental stories of their nations by the fireside, a great story is one that people today will repeat at the watercooler, in the bar, in the line at the grocery, or anywhere that there’s time for a narrative. A compelling movie (think

Still Think Persuasion is About Talking While Showing Bullet Points?

March 13th, 2017|

by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting We recently asked three top trial lawyers about what makes them so successful in the courtroom. They are quite a successful trio. One of them is Bobby Burchfield of King & Spalding, whose bio notes, “Mr. Burchfield has never lost a jury trial.” That's an especially impressive track record as he's been in practice more than 30 years. So what does winning take? Well, as we saw in previous clips from the same interviews, these trial lawyers believe, as we do, that storytelling is at the heart of building a successful case. Furthermore, as all demonstrative evidence

Lawyers: It’s Time to Make Time for Trial Preparation

March 8th, 2017|

by Tony KlapperManaging Director, Litigation ConsultingA2L Consulting At A2L, we tend to work with the top litigators at some of the nation’s best-known firms. These men and women are obviously excellent lawyers, very good at what they do. They are also very busy. They always have another complaint to respond to, another discovery dispute to resolve, another brief to write or edit, another partners meeting to attend, another associate to evaluate, and another set of bills to review before a client sees them. So when it comes time to thinking about what trial presentation works best, some of these lawyers

The Value of Storytelling: A Current Case in Point

March 1st, 2017|

by Ken LopezFounder/CEOA2L Consulting An article last month in The Recorder, a publication of American Lawyer Media, makes clearly and concisely one of the points that we frequently try to make here on this blog. The article explains what happened in a wrongful-termination trial in federal court in San Francisco, which ended on February 6 with a $10.8 million verdict, plus $5 million in punitive damages, against Bio-Rad Laboratories and in favor of the company’s former general counsel, Sanford “Sandy” Wadler. It quotes James Wagstaffe, the lead lawyer for Wadler and a partner at the small San Francisco firm of