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Authors

KenLopez resized 152

Ken Lopez founded A2L Consulting in 1995. The firm has since worked with litigators from all major law firms on more than 10,000 cases with over $2 trillion cumulatively at stake.  The A2L team is comprised of psychologists, jury consultants, trial consultants, litigation consultants, attorneys and information designers who provide jury consulting, litigation graphics and trial technology.  Ken Lopez can be reached at lopez@A2LC.com.


ryanflax blog litigation consultant 

Ryan H. Flax, Esq., Managing Director, Litigation Consulting, joined A2L Consulting on the heels of practicing Intellectual Property (IP) law as part of the Intellectual Property team at Dickstein Shapiro LLP, a national law firm based in Washington, DC.  Over the course of his career, Ryan has obtained jury verdicts totaling well over $1 billion in damages on behalf of his clients and has helped clients navigate the turbulent waters of their competitors’ patents.  Ryan can be reached at flax@a2lc.com.


dr laurie kuslansky jury consultant a2l consulting
Laurie R. Kuslansky, Ph.D, Managing Director, Trial & Jury Consulting, has conducted over 400 mock trials in more than 1,000 litigation engagements over the past 20 years. Dr. Kuslansky's goal is to provide the highest level of personalized client service possible whether one's need involves a mock trial, witness preparation, jury selection or a mock exercise not involving a jury. Dr. Kuslansky can be reached at kuslansky@A2LC.com.

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The Best Ways to Use Calendars in Legal Graphics

 


medical treatment calendar legal graphicsWe have previously discussed how valuable timelines used as legal graphics can be in the presentation of facts at trial. As we have noted, most cases involve the placing of events along some sort of time sequence, and timelines, if they are well designed, can give jurors a straightforward introduction to the facts of a case. In fact, we recently released an e-book describing best practices for the use of timelines and legal graphics at trial.

Like timelines, calendars are also an intuitive way to organize facts and events that occur in a time sequence. In fact, they are even more intuitive because everyone is familiar with them and because they help everyone organize information on a day-to-day basis. Calendars can be especially helpful at trial when there is a lot of data that must be conveyed quickly and understandably, and when that data must be understood as a time sequence. This could involve conversations, meetings, appointments, dates of official events (such as the signing of a will or a contract), and the like.

click-here-todownload-freetimeline-e-boo

 In What You Didn’t Learn In Law School About Trial Practice (2008), longtime Indiana trial lawyer Charles Bruess wrote: “In an employment discrimination case in which the defendant company maintained plaintiff was discharged for excessive absenteeism, an issue was what days plaintiff worked or did not work. Counsel brought large monthly calendars, placed them on an easel, and, as the witness testified as to the days worked or not worked, the dates were marked accordingly on the calendars. The calendars were marked as exhibits and were introduced into evidence.”

Below, to cite another legal graphics example, we used a calendar to illustrate key dates in the RFP process for a government contract, starting with the date on which the compressed RFP was issued by the Department of Defense.


In this series of legal graphics we show, in a partnership dispute, the dates on which the defendant was in the office and the dates on which he received calls or faxes from the plaintiff.
 

 

In an employment case, we used this ordinary calendar legal graphic to illustrate the dates on which a plaintiff took days off from work for various reasons. A simple color-coding technique made it easy for the jury to understand the sequence. 
 

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Next, in a medical treatment calendar legal graphic, we showed the dates of key surgeries, office visits, and hospital stays, again accompanied by a simple color-coding technique.

 

legal graphics medical treatment timeline


Finally, we used a calendar legal graphic to show key dates in the development of an invention that was at issue in a patent trial.
 

legal graphics patent invention calendar


 

legal graphics best demonstrative evidence provider

About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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New Study: A Graphically Immersive Trial Presentation Works Best

 


immersive use of litigation graphicsA recent study about the best use of litigation graphics during trial reveals some new insights. This study was conducted by Persuasion Strategies, a litigation consulting firm that is part of Holland & Hart, a law firm. 

The study team was led by Ken Broda-Bahm, a leader in the art of visual presentation in the courtroom. With a doctorate in speech communication that emphasizes rhetoric and legal communication, Dr. Broda-Bahm is a genuine expert in jury consulting.

In the Visual Persuasion Study, Dr. Broda-Bahm and his team conducted extensive research about the best approach to trial presentation in the courtroom. Their experience, which remains the topic of continued research, reveals that a graphically immersive approach to trial presentation gets the best results with jurors.

In a project that compared various uses of graphics and their effects on potential jurors, Dr. Broda-Bahm wrote, he and his team learned something very important: “The occasional use of graphics is not enough.” 

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The study looked at 1375 mock jurors and tested five different ways of presenting a defense case: (1) no litigation graphics; (2) flip chart graphics created live; (3) static graphics; (4) animation; and (5) an immersion style of presentation in which animated and static graphics were in constant use.

The team found that in order to obtain the full benefits of visual persuasion, attorneys should be using a continuous approach, giving the jury something to look at in a constant manner, at all times. Instead of following the practice of most attorneys of only using the screen periodically to show a document or image when a particular need presents itself, effective attorneys use graphic immersion -- an approach relying on continuous imagery to reinforce all parts of the message. This approach turns out to be most effective of all the graphic modes that were tested.

Graphic immersion, Dr. Broda-Bahm’s test results concluded, greatly enhanced positive juror response, beyond the results that came from occasional use of static graphics or animation. It is possible that this result springs from the fact that when something is both shown and told to jurors, they engage two separate sensory processing areas of their brain – the auditory cortex and the visual cortex -- thus sharing the cognitive load and making it easy for the brain to process the information.

Dr. Broda-Bahm told me that the study has convinced him that “attorneys should be using PowerPoint throughout opening and closing and the same is true while experts are speaking.”

We believe that as the disciplines of jury consulting and litigation graphics become increasingly intertwined, more study is needed on what are the most effective techniques throughout the trial presentation.

 

best demonstrative evidence firm immersive

About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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Who Are the Best Demonstrative Evidence Firms?

 

 

Best of NLJ A2L Consulting The National Law Journal is currently running a contest entitled “The Best of NLJ” to select the top providers of services to law firms nationwide. Everyone at A2L Consulting and I would, of course, like your vote, but more important than anything, please do vote.

Last year, A2L Consulting was voted the best demonstrative evidence provider in the Washington, D.C., area – our home base.

We are hoping to win the national honor this year. Voting is open through March 31, 2012.

I’m very excited about this contest not only because we were nominated, but also because it indicates that the demonstrative evidence industry is fully understood and accepted in the legal community and is here to stay.

Our type of service – using psychology and technology of all varieties to help trial lawyers present evidence in a clear and convincing way – is barely 25 years old. When A2L Consulting opened its doors, as Animators at Law, in 1995, we spent more time selling the need for our service than selling our firm.  Now, most large cases go to trial with at least two demonstrative evidence firms involved.

do-you-lead-trial-teamsdownload-leader

It turns out that it is quite difficult to make the complex simple. It takes time and expertise to do it well. With firms like ours going to trial all the time – far more frequently than even a top litigation law firm – we have a great deal of experience. As technology and change accelerate, cases have become more complex, and the need for demonstrative evidence firms has never been greater.

It is really quite amazing what we do – advise some of the nation’s best communicators about how to communicate more effectively.

As a finalist in the NLJ competition, we are in good company with other national firms such as TrialGraphix and DecisionQuest. We are proud to be in the same category as firms like these, which helped create our industry. DOAR, formed in 1989, helped bring technology to courtrooms in the 1990s. DecisionQuest popularized jury consulting on a national scale, and TrialGraphix helped give one element of our service a name.

I believe our unique approach to litigation consulting, using visually oriented attorneys and former litigators to lead our project teams, has profoundly improved the way top litigators try cases.

We would like your vote. Just go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/NLJBest2012, and

  1. Fill in your name and other information.

  2. Locate the question about the BEST DEMONSTRATIVE EVIDENCE PROVIDER. The 60 or so questions are presented in random order.

  3. You may respond to the other questions as well but you need not do so. Then click through to the end of the questionnaire to “Done.”

We hope that this contest is just another step in the recognition of A2L Consulting as an industry leader.

 

best demonstrative evidence provider 

 

About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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5 Inspiring Information Design/Data Visualization Sites for Lawyers

 

 

information design graphics data visualization lawyersWhen a litigator engages a trial graphics consultant, he or she will most likely be getting more than anticipated - an expert in information design.

Information design, a field that is less than 50 years old, has been defined as a process that is “concerned with transforming data into information, making the complex easier to understand and to use. It is a rapidly growing discipline that draws on typography, graphic design, applied linguistics, applied psychology, applied ergonomics, computing, and other fields. It emerged as a response to people's need to understand and use such things as forms, legal documents, computer interfaces and technical information.”

Less than 30 years ago, the parallel field of trial graphics emerged – and trial graphics specialists can learn a great deal from the art and science of information design, and can contribute to the growth of that field as well.

After all, lawyers engage in information design and data visualization all the time, and demonstrative evidence firms such as ours provide litigators with the skills and specialized resources to provide information in a way that is not only easier to understand but also persuasive to a judge, jury, or other fact-finder.

In the courtroom, of course, the demands on the provider of information design are even more intense than in the normal situation, where the designer creates a map, chart, or similar graphic for travelers or viewers to understand. In the courtroom, the stakes are higher: the fact finder must quickly and almost intuitively come to an understanding of the subject matter and must find it convincing. 

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So it’s not surprising that the best demonstrative evidence firms look to some of the best information design web sites and blogs for ideas and inspiration.  Here's where the designers at A2L Consulting go for inspiration:

  1. Flowing Data is an excellent site with years worth of curated information design graphics including one here to illustrate the relative odds of each team winning the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.
     
  2. Cool Infographics shares a unique style of info graphics including how the iPad can replace any number of other devices and actually save money for its users.
     
  3. Information is Beautiful focuses on data visualization, often a difficult and important task in litigation.  Most will find this info graphic showing the true size of Africa surprising.
     
  4. Information Aesthetics is best for viewers with an interest in "big data" visualizations like the entire corporate history of GE via an interactive graphic. We often are tasked with describing decades of corporate history, and a simplified version of this chart would be suitable for courtroom use.
     
  5. The New York Times is also an outstanding source of excellent data presentation. Here, the designers present the President’s proposed 2013 budget.  In this fascinating graphic, they display information about how Americans spend a typical day – eating, sleeping, working, engaging in recreation, and the like.

There is almost no limit to what creative designers can accomplish – whether building a subway map or an exhibit in a patent infringement case.


browse-trial-graphics-articles

 

 


About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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Lists of Analogies, Metaphors and Idioms for Lawyers

 


analogy metaphor lawyersby Ken Lopez

The task of a trial lawyer is to convince a judge or jury to believe in the truth of a client’s case.  However, in many complex trials, the underlying facts are not as easily understood by the fact-finder as they would be in, say, a murder case or a traffic accident. A case, especially the type of litigation that we are involved in, often turns on complex issues of science, medicine, engineering, or some other subject that jurors and many judges are not well versed in.

How does a lawyer move from the arcane to the everyday and get jurors to follow along? Enter the metaphor, simile, or idiom.

We use these “figures of speech” all the time in conversation, often without realizing we are doing so.  Whenever we say we need to “level the playing field” or “push the envelope” or “draw a line in the sand,” we are using a metaphor. When we say something is “as dull as dishwater” or “as slow as molasses,” we are using a simile. When we tell a friend to “break a leg” for good luck, we are using an idiom. 

click-here-todownload-freetimeline-e-boo

Briefly, a metaphor is a figure of speech that uses one thing to refer to another as a means of making a comparison between the two. A simile actually makes the comparison between two dissimilar things directly with the use of the word “like” or “as.” An idiom is an expression that is more than the sum of its parts (think “raining cats and dogs” or “spill the beans”); it is usually based on a metaphor, though the metaphor may be a bit “buried” after centuries of use. These figures of speech have one thing in common: They are all used as analogies, to compare one thing to another.

In a trial, a lawyer can use a metaphor to show the jury how something works or how an event occurred, based on an analogy to another thing or process that jurors know well from their everyday lives. For example, in an antitrust case, when describing how a group of competitors squeezed another company out of the market by denying it the opportunity to buy a needed product, the lawyer might tell the jury that the conspirators choked the life out of the other company as if they had denied it the air it needed to breathe.

Ray Moses of the Center for Criminal Justice Advocacy, a Texas-based nonpartisan, grassroots training resource that helps lawyers become competent criminal trial practitioners, writes well about analogies and metaphors.

“Jurors remember facts and concepts that are familiar to them or that can be analogized to familiar subjects,” Moses writes. “Those who aspire to be effective communicators and persuaders must learn to argue by analogy and to explain by stories. This is particularly true when we are seeking to clarify and tie together complex facts, abstract ideas, or legal concepts. If facts or legal issues become overcomplicated, jurors become overwhelmed. It is here that an appropriate analogy may assist the jury in comprehending the import of the evidence that has been dished out during testimony, assessing the credibility of the sources of evidence, and/or understanding the application of law to facts that are found to be true.”

Below are a number of websites that are useful in finding the best analogy, metaphor, similie or idiom to use in your case: 


Below are some additional resources on the A2L Consulting site:
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using analogies metaphors with demonstrative evidence

About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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[Free E-Book] Designing the Perfect Trial Timeline for Your Case

 


free trial timeline demonstrative evidence bookIn most trial presentations, the trial timeline is often the single most critical demonstrative exhibit used at trial. Much like an effective opening statement, the trial timeline:
  • Orients the viewer;
  • Provides a framework around which facts can be organized;
  • Allows for easy comparison of events occurring in sequence or simultaneously;
  • Builds trust and credibility by sharing a believable story;
  • and even persuades when built correctly.
At A2L Consulting, we have built thousands of different types of trial timelines since our founding in the 1990s. Back then, all timelines were printed, enlarged and mounted on foam core. Today, trial timeline graphics are usually electronic and have some type of interactive features.
 
Drawn from decades of experience with all major law firms, today we release our latest e-book from the A2L litigation series: The Litigator and Litigation Support Professional's Guide to Timelines.  
 

Inside this valuable e-book, you will find:
 

  • 25 reference trial timelines to help you overcome common trial timeline dilemmas;

  • Learn A2L's Top 5 Trial Timeline Tips;

  • and much more in this complimentary e-book.

 
download-freetimeline-e-book


About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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Say Goodbye to the David vs. Goliath Courtroom Myth

 


http://marketplace.veer.com/stock-photo/Competition-4422205?slot=61&pg=1&skeywords=goliath
We often hear from clients or prospective clients that it won’t help them if they look like a big company that is attempting to overwhelm or dazzle its opponents with technology. Jurors won’t buy that sort of stuff, we are told, even from a litigant that is actually a large company.

But although some may think that if the other side can present a “David vs. Goliath” story line, a major corporation will end up in danger of losing its case, research suggests that this is not so. In the first place, jurors have a pretty good idea about which corporations are large ones, and it won’t help to “hide the ball.”

In the second place, this sort of argument made more sense a decade or more in the past, when technology was just getting a foothold in America. Now, technology is simply a fact of daily existence, and jurors expect to see it.

In 2011, 78 percent of Americans used the Internet regularly, and just over 50 percent of Americans used Facebook. Forty-four percent of Americans owned a smartphone, up all the way from 18 percent just two years before. And these numbers are only going to go up.

subscribe-to-our-blog

Dr. Lou Genevie, a voir dire and trial consulting expert and founder of Litstrat, noted, "In our research, big companies that try to play small often pay a high price in a further erosion of their credibility.  Finding the visual porridge for a big company that feels and looks 'just right' is a challenging process, very case specific, and the reason for testing the visual case long before rolling it out at the actual trial."

Trial consultant David Davis, a founder of R&D Strategic Solutions in Lexington, Mass., recalls: “In an agricultural area of Oklahoma, we worked for a client who was concerned about how their exhibits would be received by the jury and whether it would make the client appear to be slick and wealthy. In post-trial juror interviews we found there had been no problem. One juror commented, ‘I see better things on my computer every day.’ ”

Trial Behavior Consulting's Sarah Murray, a social and cultural anthropologist recognized for her expertise in trial strategy, jury selection, witness preparation and visual communication, says, “My research and experience over the years consistently show that jurors like well-executed graphics and that a "David vs. Goliath" scenario is not a problem. The problem is when a team has not well thought out its graphics or graphic communication strategy and has a lot of graphics that go nowhere but show that a lot of money has been thrown at the case.”

In a similar vein, a litigation support specialist for a United States Attorney’s office has written in the United States Attorneys’ Bulletin [pdf] “There is always some concern that using technology … will make the government look too slick or fuel the argument from defense counsel of the ‘vast resources of the federal government.’ In reality, the jury expects the government to be prepared and smooth in presenting the case to them. They already know that the government has resources.”

Thus, this supposed David versus Goliath issue ultimately doesn’t appear to us to be as significant as it once might have been, for either the David who is considering using its status to its advantage, or the Goliath who is concerned about appearing a giant. High quality preparation, irespective of stature, is what today's judges and juries are looking for and expecting.

See also: Trial Presentation Too Slick?  Here's Why You Can Stop Worrying 

 

learn-more-download-a-free-e-book-now  

About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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Making the Complex Understandable in Pharmaceutical Cases

 


making complex cases understandable in pharma litigationPharmaceutical companies can be embroiled in many types of litigation. Very often, because of the length of time and the tremendous investment of money that it takes to develop a new drug and bring it to market, these cases can be crucial to the company’s continuing financial health.

For this reason, it is crucial that a litigator make these often complex cases understandable for the fact-finder, whether judge or jury. Once understanding is achieved, persuasive graphics and argument can be layered on top of that understanding.

Among the types of cases that pharma companies can frequently encounter are:

  • Products liability cases. Often, plaintiffs and their lawyers use pharma cases as attempts to develop new theories of liability and to establish new theories of causation of harm. The defendant drug companies and their law firms need to explain to jurors, who are likely to be suspicious of big pharma companies, why the company should not be held liable. Making complex information understandable in these cases is essential.
     
  • False Claims Act cases. Under the False Claims Act, someone who believes that the government has been defrauded can bring a case that the Department of Justice has the option of joining. These cases can include charges of billing fraud, kickbacks, violations of good manufacturing practices, wrongdoing in clinical research, and other allegations.
    a2l-download-patent-ebook
     
  • Antitrust litigation. As is true of many industries with only a few large participants, the pharma industry is often the target of antitrust cases. These can be either civil or criminal in nature and can be brought either by the government or by private parties. They can include allegations of monopolization of the market for a drug, charges that a merger is illegal, or allegations of illegal collusion among competitors.
     
  • Patent litigation. This type of litigation has become common because of the passage of the Hatch-Waxman Act in 1984. The act provides a mechanism for generic drug companies to quickly gain approval to sell a generic version of an existing brand name drug.  Here, the complexities of the process can be a struggle for a jury.  Thus, the use of litigation graphics is essential to make complex information understandable.

For example, under Hatch-Waxman, the application that begins the FDA approval process for the generic firm is called an Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA).  Brand name drug manufacturers have an understandable incentive to delay approval of the ANDA. If that approval is delayed, the brand name firm continues to be able to lawfully sell its brand name drug without a lower priced generic equivalent in the market. One lawful mechanism that brand name companies can use that may have the effect of delaying the approval of an ANDA is the filing of a Citizen Petition with the FDA.

A Citizen Petition filed by a brand name firm would typically allege that the proposed generic drug is not equivalent to the brand name drug and thus should not be approved for sale.  Should the Citizen Petition be deemed only a mechanism for delaying approval of the generic drug rather than one filed with the public's health interest at heart, the brand name firm would be liable for antitrust violations.

In a case of this type, our challenge in creating an effective trial presentation was to create trial exhibits that taught the jury and persuaded the jury simultaneously. The trial exhibits (below) were part of a PowerPoint presentation that explained how differently Citizen Petitions and ANDAs are handled at the FDA.

 

Similarly, in the “Hatch Waxman ANDA Bioequivalency Exhibit” (below), the straightforward area graphs show a jury how the proposed generic drug has a different concentration level and is thus not bioequivalent. This exhibit helped lead to a complete defense verdict for our client, a major pharmaceutical company.
 

 

Often pharmaceutical litigation involves topics at the microscopic level, and it is in such instances that making complex information understandable becomes especially critical.  In the short animation below, we demonstrate how an impenetrable layer is created by a polymer. This explanation was critical to a jury's understanding in patent litigation worth hundreds of millions of dollars. 
 


Paraphrasing Mark Twain, if litigators had more time to prepare, they would usually make a shorter presentation that is easy to understand.  The key to a shorter, more efficient presentation is taking the necessary time to make complex information easy to understand or hiring an effective demonstrative evidence/litigation consulting firm. Like many aspects of A2L Consulting's work, making the complex understandable is simple but not at all easy.


Learn more about A2L Consulting's work:



demonstrative evidence in pharmaceutical cases makes complex understandable 

About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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Legal Graphics in Cases Involving Architecture

 


Litigation involving architecture usually involves some failure in the construction process, a dispute over lease terms like sight lines or common areas, an insurance claim involving an allegedly negligent design, or the responsibility for a building damaged in a natural disaster.


Since most jurors are familiar with architecture to some degree, what usually has to be explained is the legal meaning of seemingly everyday terms, the process of design and construction, or the common customs of the architectural and construction businesses.  That's where legal graphics often enter the picture.

 

free-e-books-download-from-our-popular
 

Architecture-related litigation, especially when major damage has occurred, can involve high stakes. As a law firm that works in the area has written [pdf],

 

The goriest photos, the most damning letters from the builder, the contract specifications, juxtaposed with the defense expert's field notes stating that some critical element is missing and noting damage. That's what the attorney begins assembling, and in some logical, meaningful manner, if possible.

* * *

As the trial date approaches, court-imposed deadlines for exchange of motions become the new reality. Trial briefs, responses and replies on legal issues; motions seeking to prevent introduction of evidence (also called motions in limine); exhibit lists, witness lists and a myriad of other tasks are due. The exhibit and jury consultants must be summoned to assist in creating oversize photos, boards, demonstrative exhibits, models, flow charts, and any other visual aid that might help in keeping the jury focused on the facts, and on "our" side of the case.  


We have had considerable experience creating legal graphics in many types of litigation that center around architecture and design. For example, when buildings are damaged as a result of a natural disaster such as a hurricane or tornado, litigation often follows. In the legal graphic presentation below, we created an interactive PowerPoint map of a building to show the damage from many perspectives.


In a very different kind of matter, we are frequently involved in disputes involving commercial leases in which millions of dollars are at stake. Below, a simple legal graphics site tour comes to life with interactive photos of the office areas in question linked to the floor plan. This presentation made an otherwise dry exhibit much more gripping.

 

In the case below, the issue in a landlord-tenant commercial dispute was whether the architectural sight lines permitted a retailer’s branding to be clearly seen. The planned new plaza would introduce new sight lines and possibly breach the lease. Our courtroom legal graphics showed how that occurred.

 

With careful planning, legal graphics can help any architecture related dispute be understandable and those same legal graphics can help persuade the fact-finder that your position is correct based on the facts and law.  This is true whether the architectural dispute relates to design, construction, landlord-tenant issues, insurance coverage, environmental issues or a dispute over a contract.

 

Other useful resources on A2L Consulting's site related to architecture litigation:

courtroom graphics demonstrative evidence provider


About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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How to Pick a Litigation Consulting Firm (Jury, Graphics or Tech)

 

 

choosing best litigation consultantA2L has been around since 1995 and can work on hundreds or even thousands of cases in a given year. With that experience, we have seen a great many law firms and in-house departments go through the process of finding a litigation consulting firm for litigation services such as trial consulting, litigation graphics and trial technician support

Here is our suggested approach to an effective vetting process for a law firm considering litigation consulting services. As you will see, we think the process works best when it is structured and when each potential vendor is asked to provide the same information. Always make sure that you cover the following questions in interviewing the potential provider:

Experience and Process. How long has the firm been in the litigation consulting business – specifically, how long has it been doing litigation graphics, trial technology and jury research? Does the firm have a project management process? Will the law firm need to deal with multiple support groups, or will there be a single point of contact for the project? Does the firm have lawyers and Ph.D. consultants on staff, or is it one that focuses mostly on art or courtroom technology?

Capabilities and Work Product. What are some good examples of the firm’s litigation graphics work, its ability to create a hyperlinked e-brief, and its juror survey and jury consulting approach? Has the firm supported cases of a similar size to the one that is now before you? Has the firm received any industry awards or won similar accolades for its work? Can the firm provide on-site graphics support, in addition to trial technology?

20-trial-tech-must-knows Systems and Infrastructure. Does the firm require that you use their proprietary trial presentation software or are they able to work with Trial Director and Sanction? Do they have enough people to get the job done in a timely and effective manner? On average, how many cases do their trial technicians support at any given time? What method does the firm use to create demonstrative deliverables: Can the lawyers modify the text created by the vendor in the PowerPoint slides? Can the firm produce large boards and in what time frame?  Can they make their e-briefs iPad accessible? What processes do they support for file delivery and exchange – email only, web-based, or ftp transfer?

Pricing Options. Does the firm have flexible pricing arrangements? Will it consider a fixed fee? How does the firm work to manage or avoid cost overruns? Can the firm estimate expenses in advance to develop a budget, and stick to that budget?

A law firm that consistently uses this approach is likely to find a litigation consulting firm that it will be pleased with.  We sincerely wish you the best in your search!
 

Some other resources you may find helpful on our site:



best demonstrative evidence litigation graphics provider


About A2L Consulting

•  Leading national litigation consulting firm since 1995

•  Personnel nationwide

•  Routinely voted #1 for demonstrative evidence consulting, jury consulting or intellectual property litigation consulting nationally

•  Consulted for all major law firms on 10,000+ cases with trillions of dollars cumulatively at stake offering:

Trial Consulting: mock trials, Micro-Mock™, mock Markman hearings, jury consulting, shadow juries, jury selection and more; 

Trial Graphics: legal graphics and litigation graphics, courtroom animation, video, printed foam core trial exhibits, PowerPoint presentation consulting, simplifying the case story and more; 

Trial Technology & Onsite Personnel: ebriefs (electronic briefs), hot seat operators, trial technicians, courtroom presentations and more; 

Look for A2L trial consultants, graphics consultants and jury consultants in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD, New York, NY, Boston, MA, Alexandria, VA, Atlanta, GA, Miami, FL, Chicago, IL, Houston, Texas, Los Angeles, CA, and San Francisco, California, Wilmington, Delaware, Philadelphia, PA, Phoenix, AZ, San Antonio, Palo Alto, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cleveland, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Richmond, VA, Salt Lake City, Denver, London, Dublin, Johannesburg, Brussels and many other cities and countries around the world. A2L Contact Information


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