Fireside Reading for the Trial Lawyer

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The next best thing to being in court is reading about it. The following is a list of books I believe will help you become a better trial attorney:

1.Polarizing the Case: Exposing and Defeating the Malingering Myth by Rick Friedman ;- this book provides an innovative approach to trying cases. Too often we allow the defense in personal-injury cases to hide behind ambiguities and insinuate that client is not being truthful. This book provides you with concrete examples to force your opponent to either embrace fully embrace the position ;that your client is “a liar, a cheat and a fraud” or completely abandon this position. The book provides a comprehensive approach to simplify your case and deal with a single coherent theme… Is my client telling truth about her injuries?

2. Rick Friedman on Becoming a Trial Lawyer by Rick Friedman – a great book for young lawyers about what it takes to become a real “trial attorney”.

3. David Ball on Damages by David Ball– an excellent book on strategies and methods to help jurors better appreciate the scope of damages and why it is necessary to compensate those who have been damage or injured.

4. The Art of Cross-Examination by Francis Wellman ;- classic legal literature which still rings true today on various techniques for cross-examination.

5. Closing Argument: The Last Battle ;- This book is a well-organized ;collection of miscellaneous arguments and analogies which can be ;used to explain and illustrate various legal issues and address common defense attorney arguments and tactics which are used ;to undercut, confuse, distract or sidetrack juries from the central issues in a personal injury case. The book has ;a number of very effective arguments which address topics such as calculating money damages for pain and suffering, adverse witnesses, the burden of proof/ reasonable man standard, subtle appeals to prejudice, and other often ;encountered issues in civil cases. A review of the table of contents will give you a good idea of this book’s value.

6. Win Your Case: How to Present, Persuade, and Prevail by Gerry Spence – this book will help you fine your own voice and become a more effective advocate for you clients.

7. Exposing Deceptive Defense Doctors by Dorothy Clay Sims ;- this book provides in-depth check lists and strategies for dealing with defense medical examinations of all sorts.

8. Theater Tips and Strategies for Jury Trials by David Ball ;- this book analyzes all aspects of your presentation to juries to become a more effective communicator in the courtroom.

9. The Best Defense by Alan M. Dershowitz– a practical eye-opening guide to what criminal defense attorneys face in terms of bias and corruption in our criminal justice system based upon cases where Professor Dershowitz of Harvard has acted as defense counsel.

10. ;Letters to a Young Lawyer by Alan M. Dershowitz – advice to young lawyers on ethics, professionalism and pitfalls to avoid in the practice of law.

11. I Remember Atticus: Inspiring Stories Every Trial Lawyer Should Know By Jim M. Perdue – a wonderful compendium of stories that bring to life how legal protections arose such as trial by citizen jurors and the separation and exclusion of witnesses from the courtroom.

12. In the Interest of Justice: Great Opening & Closing Statements by Joel Seidemann ;- this is ;a collection of notable of opening and closing statements in famous cases.

13. THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE by William Strunk – a short guide on how write clearly and concisely.

14. The Devil’s Advocates by Michael S. Lief – ;this ;is ;a collection of notable of opening and closing statements in famous criminal cases.

15. A Rulebook for Arguments (Fourth Edition) by Anthony Weston – it is a concise guide on argument structure and use.

16. Lawyers’ Poker: 52 Lessons that Lawyers Can Learn from Card Players by Steven Lubet – the book uses poker as an analogical means illustrating various points of law.

17. Ladies and Gentlemen Of The Jury by Michael S. Lief ;- this ;book contains transcripts notable ; opening and closing statements in famous cases.

18.And the Walls Came Tumbling Down by Michael S Lief ;- ; ;this ;book contains transcripts notable ;closing statements ; made in famous civil rights cases.

19. The Trial Lawyers: The Nation’s Top Litigators Tell How They Win by Emily Couric ;- a behind the scenes disclosure of methods used by experts in litigation to prepare and try cases.

20. The Trial Lawyer: What It Takes to Win by David Berg – this book provides a comprehensive overview of what it takes to win at trial.

21.McElhaney’s Trial Notebook by James W. McElhaney ;- A collection of ;essays on trial advocacy by Professor McElhaney ;covers a number of ;areas involved in modern-day litigation. ;

22. ; To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee – The classic novel of a courageous lawyer taking on the unpopular cause of a black man charged with raping a white woman. ; This book displays the best and worse of our justice system and has inspired a number of people to become lawyers.

There are many more books out there worthy of consideration. This is simply a short list of books I would recommend you read.

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Posted on February 21, 2012, in Trial Advocacy and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Wow. Having my book in the same list with Harper Lee? My life is complete now! Not to mention being in the same list as David Ball, Rick Friedman and Gerry Spence? THANK YOU!

    Dorothy Sims

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