THE WHEELCHAIR IN THE ROOM 
Wednesday, January 20, 2016, 02:52 PM
Posted by Administrator
The Plaintiff unfortunate enough to have been so severely injured in an auto accident that they are now in a wheelchair won't be sitting at the Plaintiff's table in court for the two week long liability trial. He will wheel in, from time to time, and then he will leave. You don't want the jury to get too used to seeing the wheelchair or they will become desensitized to it and will award less money.

In a wrongful death tire case I was involved in some years ago*, the Plaintiff's lawyer paraded in the decedent's children....introduced them to the jury....and led them the courtroom door. Familiarity may not have bred contempt but ...conventional wisdom says: it won't engender sympathy.

When your lawyer does something to rile up the other side in an attempt to induce them to settle.....settle up quick. Time leads to complacency. There is a chance to come to terms with what scares you and it doesn't scare you so much, anymore.

There is a reason why the saying "Strike while the iron is hot." has withstood the test of time. It is not because cattle ranchers dawdle after taking their branding iron out of the fire. It IS because non-cattle ranchers forget that:...when the iron is hot: you should strike.

*Note: Though I am a modest man, I do claim credit for: Least-time-spent-in-a-courtroom in a Palm Beach County wrongful death case decided by a jury. My client, a local tire company, was sued by the decedent only so the case could be in Palm Beach County (as opposed to another, more backwoods county, where the Plaintiff would not be likely to get as much money...it is a "venue" thing). I was there before jury selection and I told the judge I'd see him at the close of the Plaintiff's case. I stopped in, from time to time, to see where the trial was at; I showed up when I promised; I asked the judge for a directed verdict as there had been no evidence that my client (whose employees may have once looked at the tire that later blew out) had anything to do with anything. The judge granted the motion. The other defendants lost.
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