Judge Awards $1.03 MIL for “Necessary” Trial Support (graphics and technology) Compensation

This ruling reflects a drastic paradigm shift in our legal system from the traditions of paper and overheads to trial presentation systems and cutting edge graphics.  It’s refreshing to see a landmark ruling like this and how the judge identifies with the jurors’ expectations of a technologically savvy presentation. He goes on to suggest that the judiciary should encourage such cutting edge presentations like this as they not only save the court and juror’s time (as well as tax payer’s dollars), but are also professional and respectful.

The opposition’s comment on the use of technology and graphics in trial was laughable and borderline malpractice when representing a billion dollar client in a suit worth hundreds of millions of dollars.  Opposing counsel had this to say, in light of the ruling:

“For hundreds of years, he noted, juries reached verdicts with technology confined to ink on paper.”

Really?  Like I said, borderline malpractice….


Hong Kong businessman Richard Suen was awarded $1.03 million Wednesday to cover expenses for his six-week trial that ended in May, 10 percent less than he had requested but far more than the 90 percent discount requested by his one-time client, Las Vegas Sands Corp.

In taking 39 minutes to deliver his ruling from the bench…

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Litigators, Why You Need To Learn How to Use Siri for Your Practice

As people in the litigation industry, we are experts at juggling things.  On any given day, I’ll be juggling 2-3 cases, marketing initiatives, blogging, a charity, my action sports and my Muay Thai business all while trying to have a personal life intertwined in my “free time”.  Doing this can sometimes be cumbersome and seem almost impossible, but there are some incredible tools out there to help you in your balancing act; some that you actually own, but don’t even know how powerful it can be.

I’m an iPhone guy (and pretty much everything else Apple as well – iPod, MacBook, etc.), but up until recently, I never knew the true power of what was literally in my hand.  To me, Siri was this “sometimes helpful, mostly annoying, marketing gimic” that Apple created to be clever.  Her and I have had an on-again, off-again relationship for nearly a year, but lately, I find myself calling her more than ever before; call it laziness, but I call it efficiency and productivity, two things that us in the litigation world absolute need.

“Siri is the incredibly handy assistant that comes with iOS devices.  Through voice commands, you can get Siri to do almost anything that you could normally do on your phone or tablet yourself.  In this article, we’ll show how to put Siri to work to make your iOS experience easier and faster.”

Korbin Brown’s great article explains how to get the most out of this “free” assistant.  Follow his instructions and “date” Siri for a week or two; I promise it will be worth it!

What can I ask Siri to do?

You can ask Siri to do just about anything, and you don’t need to be overly specific about what you say.  For example, you can say things like “Give my mom a call,” instead of “Make a phone call to my mother.”  Speaking casually or formally, Siri knows what you mean.  On the list of commands below, keep in mind there are quite a few ways to say each one.  Don’t get hung up on any of the wording, just read this to learn of Siri’s various functions.

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Why Reading Your Litigation PowerPoint Slides Hurts Jurors

by Ken Lopez
A2L Consulting

I was just painfully reminded of how bad a juror’s experience can be when we fail to put them first. Yesterday morning, like many of you recently, I had to complete a continuing education course. It was your typical recorded one-hour one-credit online course. That’s one of the slides pictured here.

While listening to the instructor, it struck me that the experience I was having was eerily similar to most opening statements. It lasted about an hour, 119 PowerPoint slides were presented, there were lots of bullet points, almost no actual graphics were used, and the content of the slides was dutifully read to me by a well-spoken middle-aged gentleman.

And it nearly killed me.

You see, even though I have a law degree, I am much more like a typical juror than a typical lawyer. When someone presents to me with the intent of persuading and/or teaching me something, I expect a lot, and boy did this presentation fail to deliver.

Why does reading your litigation PowerPoint slides really cause a problem for people?

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do not read powerpoint slides jury


50 Twitter Accounts Lawyers Should Follow Religiously (Part I)

The title says it all. If you’re new to Twitter, or you’re getting bored with your current feed, this is the list you need: Fifty accounts, covering the Supreme Court, legal news, law and technology, humor, and other blawging topics.

What are the ground rules for the list? No multiples from the same company, unless they are cover completely different topics. General legal topics get the nod over specialized accounts. Also, this list is based on my opinions and an informal straw poll. That means I forgot you. I apologize. Please don’t rage tweet me.

You’ll also notice that there are only 30 handles on this list. Want to be on Part II and help me round out the top 50? Tweet me, the curator of the list, or FindLaw for Legal Professionals, the corporate veil who sits next to me.

See the list here:


16 Litigation Graphics Lessons for Mid-Sized Law Firms

litigation graphics mid size law firm

by Ken Lopez
A2L Consulting

Over the past three decades, law firms have figured out that litigation best practices include the extensive use of visual aids, the regular use of a trial technician to manage electronic evidence at trial, and the value of conducting one or more mock exercises. Each of these practice areas has developed in response to specific problems that exist in bench and jury trials alike, and there is an art and science (and about a $250 million industry) that exists around litigation consulting.

So, as more large litigation is pushed into midsize firms as a cost containment measure, I notice something interesting. Most midsized firms just don’t know how to use litigation consultants, and what might look like cost savings is going to yield troublesome results later. After all, we figured all of these problems out once in the 1990s, and an industry exists to provide solutions.

So in the spirit of offering the midsized firm, or frankly any firm that is not an AmLaw 50 firm, a solid primer on what’s been learned these past 20 years, I offer the following 16 lessons:

1. Using Litigation Graphics Yields Better Results: It’s beyond “broad scientific consensus,” it’s just a fact, Litigation graphics provide better results. This recent 2013 study on the effect of visual evidence on juries [PDF] does a good job of summarizing the science of litigation graphics.

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5 Morning Rituals to Keep You Productive All Day Long


Most of us work long hours: 40, 50 or even 60 hours each week. But chances are, given distractions like online entertainment, office snacking habits and ill-designed time management, we’re only churning out high-quality work a portion of each day.

Here are five practical steps to incorporate into any morning routine to optimize your time at the office and maintain productivity all day long:

7 minutes of exercise. Yep, not 10 — just seven. Why? It’s short enough that it won’t impact the rest of your morning routine and long enough to shake off any residual sluggishness from the night before — including that extra glass of wine.

There are endless fitness routines to turn to, but the one I like best is called the 7 Minute Workout (and yes, there’s an app for that). In just seven minutes, it works all major muscle groups with 12 total exercises.

Start your day out green. Sure, we’ve all been told that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and it’s pretty easy to reach for a bagel, bowl of cereal, egg sandwich or cup of yogurt to get your metabolism going.

While all of these options are fine choices once in a while
Read more: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/230734#ixzz2qfX9MzB0

5 Morning Rituals to Keep You Productive All Day Long


Making Good Use of Trial Director & Demonstratives in an Arbitration

Posted by Ken Lopez

TrialDirector, a trial presentation software package produced by InData, is an indispensable aid to the presentation of electronic and other evidence at trial. There is a reason why this product has claimed the majority of the market share for trial presentation software for more than 10 years: It can actually make it interesting for a jury or other fact-finder to listen to a witness testify about corporate balance sheets, long-ago emails, and other documents that can be fatally boring and lose the attention of the fact-finder.

trial director technology presentation

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Encourage Mindfulness in Your Legal Practice

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm: 


As the new year begins, it is the time for resolutions. If you’re like many lawyers –- constantly under the pull of future plans and deadlines –- a good resolution might be to “live in the present moment,” or as the Zen masters say, to “be here, now.” That goal can be elusive, at least for me. Even as I’m finishing one task (like this blog post, for example), I generally am thinking about the next one. But the goal of giving more focus to the present moment is not a bad one. And the benefits are more practical than one might think. In a recent study (Hafenbrack et al., 2013), for example, researchers found that encouraging just 15 minutes of mindful, present attention dramatically reduces the impacts of a persistent psychological bias.

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The 5 Biggest Issues in Patent Law Right Now

by Ryan H. Flax, Esq.
Managing Director, Litigation Consulting
A2L Consulting

The field of patent law, like all other areas of the law in the U.S., is constantly in flux and is constantly being refined or even rewritten by the courts and the lawmakers.  Even more so than most other areas of law this is true for patent law because, if for no other reason, there are so many nuances to it and so many different complimentary and competing doctrines within the greater label of “patent law.”

patent litigation law issuesTo make matters more volatile, patent practitioners have two courts to deal with in terms of those believing they’re the last word on the relevant law: the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court.

So, recently there have been some interesting issues evolving in patent law.  Here’s a brief review to keep everyone up to date.

1. Trolls – slaying the beast under the bridge

patent trolls litigationThe most frequent patent news as of late relates to newly proposed legislation to make it less attractive for non-practicing entities

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