At the end of the course you should be able to perform the following with regards to developing a case theory and preparing a trial notebook by:


I.                   UNDERSTANDING that a case theory is composed of three interrelated parts:


C                     the LEGAL theory, that is the law that entitles you to the relief you are seeking


C                     the FACTUAL theory, that is the story or facts that satisfy your legal theory


C                     the PERSUASIVE theory, that is why you should win as a matter of fairness and justice


C                     the case THEME is a one sentence distillation of your case theory that appeals to the jurors’ moral values


II.                Developing a LEGAL theory by doing the necessary legal research to determine all possible law governing your case


III.             Developing a FACTUAL theory by determining what happened and by using:


C                     Chronologies


C                     Proof Charts


C                     Identifying facts as opposed to conclusions


C                     Thinking about what inferences can be drawn from those facts–both pro and con


C                     Identifying hard facts versus soft facts


C                     Identifying those factual questions that are in dispute and determining how to develop further information about the disputed facts


C                     Thinking about the facts as a story or movie script–what should/would happen in this situation


C                     Thinking about why a jury should believe your story and not the other side’s story


IV.              Developing a PERSUASIVE theory by thinking about what spin can be put on the facts, within the context of the law, that will appeal to our sense of fairness and justice


V.                 Developing a CASE THEORY that is:


C                     Short, best summarized in one paragraph


C                     Simple


C                     Satisfies the applicable legal theory


C                     Consistent with all undisputed facts, explains all disputed facts in our favor and refutes all negative facts that need to be refuted, i.e. the case theory must be plausible


C                     Supported by credible witnesses and evidence that is admissible


C                     Emotionally appealing by satisfying our common sense, our sense of logic, our sense of justice and our sense of right and wrong


C                     Explains motives


C                     Blames someone


C                     Supported by detail


C                     Tells a story


C                     Organized in such a way that each fact makes succeeding facts increasingly more believable


C                     Uses impact words and phrases


C                     By the time of trial is limited to one theory


C                     A case theory that YOU believe


VI.              Creating a TRIAL NOTEBOOK that contains:


C                     Litigation Plan


C                     Proof Chart


C                     Key Pleadings


C                     Key Discovery/Deposition Outlines


C                     Trial Brief and Memoranda/Key Statutes


C                     Ideas


C                     To Do List


C                     Pretrial Order


C                     Juror Information and Questionnaires


C                     Voir Dire


C                     Opening Statement


C                     Stipulations


C                     List of Witnesses


C                     Exhibit Chart


C                     Direct Examinations


C                     Cross Examinations


C                     Key Exhibits


C                     Closing Argument


C                     Jury Instructions


C                     Trial Errors List


C                     Common Objections/Outline of Impeachment and Refreshing Memory