One Hundred Days Before Trial : a family lawyer's guide to preparation and strategy

Need 100 tips to write a great brief?  Check out The Winning Brief : 100 tips for persuasive briefing in Trial and Appellate Courts (Reserve KF251 .G37 2014).  Need another 100 tips to make your case ready for trial?  Check out One Hundred Days Before Trial : a family lawyer's guide to preparation and strategy (Stacks KF505.5 .P47 2015).  Both books are ready and available for you to check out at the Law Library.

Today we'll take a closer look at One Hundred Days Before Trial : a family lawyer's guide to preparation and strategy.  The central theme of this book is that with any successful endeavor there is strategic planning.  The author, Steven N. Peskind, puts together a timetable with checklists of things to do in an organized manner from start to finish.

Starting with Day 100: a sample of things you'll do to get the ball rolling - Master the Facts of Your Case - Study the Law - Summarize the Theory of the Case - Prepare a Case Notebook and an Outcome Narrative - Anticipate Your Opponent's Case - Prepare Proposed Findings of Fact and Judgment - Prepare a Proof Chart - Organize Your Team - Protect Your Calendar - Discuss Fees with Your Client and Confirm Fee Agreement in Writing.

90 Days Before Trial: Disclosure Deadlines - Discovery Options - Expert Witnesses? - Planning for Specific Issues (Property, Income, Business Valuation, Taxes, Child Custody) - Evidentiary Planning.

60 Days Before Trial: Review your Fee Balance and Address any Issues with Your Client - Prepare a Docket Book - Review the Pleadings and Read all Transcripts - Do You Need to Rework Anything? - Consider Your Witnesses and Prepare for Your Witness Examination - Prepare Direct and Cross-Examination - Finalizing Exhibits.

30 Days Before Trial: Manage Your Calendar (Again) - Prepare a Trial Memorandum - Finalize Trial Notebook - Prepare Your Opening Statement and Closing Argument - Final Pretrial Motions - Prepare for Final Trial Conferences - Witness Preparation - Prepare Your Client for the Trial and to Testify.

7 Days Before Trial: Look at Your Calendar - Conduct Final Settlement Discussions - Coordinate Your Team - Practice, Practice, Practice - Find Systems or an Assistant for Note Taking in Court - Pack for Court - Ask: What about the Client? - Double-Check Technology and Props - Perform One Last Check - Develop Rituals - Relax.

Concluding the Case: Discuss the Results with the Client - Explain Appeals and Post-Trial Motions - Put a Bow on It for the Client - Purge the File - Acknowledge the People Involved - Take Up Journaling.

While written with the family lawyer in mind, the organizational framework Mr. Peskind presents here could very well be useful to almost any attorney preparing for trial.

Submitted by Eric Taylor, Evening Reference Librarian on February 23, 2016

This article appears in the categories: Law Library

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