I’m a member of the California Employment Lawyers Association. Recently, a local Orange County group gathered recently for dinner and discussion.
Basic Trial Tactics
The following are some thoughts derived from a presentation of an employment law trial lawyer on a recent success:
- File defamation cases. Malice is inherent in a retaliation case.
- Don’t be afraid to lose.
- Tell your client’s heroic story.
- Persevere in finding your witnesses.
- Tell the jury: Don’t compromise your verdict: damages and liability are separate.
- You must win the “verdict form” battle. Instructions and findings matter.
- Go for punitives. They are leverage.
The Judicial Perspective on Trial
And some bonus information in talking with a retired judge before the program:
- Juries care about jury instructions, sometimes getting overfocused on a few words. It’s wise to tell them to use their common sense.
- You want to be a better trial lawyer? Try more cases. It’s the only way to learn.