June 9, 2014
Long gone are the days of overhead projectors. As technology continues to evolve, the legal profession is following along and using these advancements to its advantage. Now presentation software and TV monitors are changing the way you conduct your trials.
Here are a two ways technology can improve your cases:
TV Monitors and Projection Screens
PowerPoint or another presentation program is a valuable tool for your openings, closings and witness examinations, and now, you can use it in courtrooms with TV monitors or projection screens. Instead of writing things out on a white board, you can stay focused on speaking directly to the jury members all while discretely clicking to the next slide. No more blowing up photos or passing documents around the jury box. You can bring the necessary photos documents up on the monitors, even highlighting, circling or pointing to relevant parts.
Modern courtrooms give you the ability to use video or audio footage in a variety of ways to support your case. For example, use the courtroom monitor's to show a Day in the Life video during your personal injury case. These courtrooms also give you the ability to use multiple inputs. You can have a timeline of events up on one screen while you speak with your witness and pull up relevant documents on another.
Some courts are going all out and providing touch screen monitors. With these, lawyers can circle, highlight and zoom in on exactly what they want the jury to focus on.
Trial Presentation Software
You can move beyond PowerPoint and use a more inclusive trial presentation program such as Sanction or TrialDirector. These help you manage large amounts of documents, exhibits and video clips. Trial presentation software can initially be a costly investment but once you have it, you can input all of the information from your cases, organize it, and create presentations. It's more inclusive than using separate PowerPoint presentations, video clips or audio files.
Remember to discuss using technology with the court and opposing counsel before you do it. Not only do you need to make sure the court has the equipment compatible with your hardware and software but also that there are no objections.
If you're free to create presentations and use your trial software, make sure you scout the trial courtroom before hand so you know exactly how many monitors or screens are available and how you'll connect your device to the courtrooms system – such as plugging in or wireless.