Understanding Juror Attitudes and Beliefs:  Victimization

Jurors often identify with the defendant and often ask questions such as

  • How will this verdict affect me?
  • How much more will I have to pay for insurance?
  • Will this case end up costing me more for medical care?
  • Why should the plaintiff get this money when I have similar issues and can’t do so?

How do we counter these perceptions and concerns?

We need to establish that the defendant did not act as a juror would expect.

Compare and contrast the defendant’s actions with what the norm would have been.

Show the choices the defendant could have made that would have avoided the plaintiff’s injuries.

Establish that the defendant is not like the juror.

Show that in contrast to the defendant’s decisions, the plaintiff had no choice.

When the deposition testimony exposes that the defendant had multiple choices, all of which sound reasonable, a juror can say, “I never would have done that,” and are unlikely to see the defendant as a victim.

Excerpt from Advanced Depositions Strategy & Practice by Phillip H. Miller and Paul J. Scoptur Order your copy here.

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