The Advanced Technology of Jury Consulting Firms

Technology has become an integral part of the legal industry. A lot of advancements have been made in a short amount of time so law firms and legal businesses are having to adapt to the new technological world. For example, a law firm can improve it’s profitability and productivity if it starts having an online presence. Moving all their data to the cloud and having a website, however, can mean data breaches if they’re not careful and don’t get Legal IT Services to help protect them.

And, we all know that technology has become an integral part of successfully litigating a case. Whether before entering the courtroom learning the strengths and weakness of you case or presenting your case. The most effective legal arguments must convince not only the judge, but also the everyday men and women who make up the jury that your position is the correct one. Those individuals come into the case with their own perceptions and biases, which technology can help you identify and strategize accordingly. Technology advancement is very important as time goes by, lawyers need to keep up with this to help their firm thrive. If their law firm was based on helping businesses/people with bankruptcy, they will need to utilize bankruptcy lawyers marketing strategies to help them get their names out there and bring in clients.

Large and small law firms alike benefit from outside assistance in preparing for a jury trial, including in-depth analysis of which perceptions or characteristics of jurors would be more favorable for your positions. Whether through courtroom observations or monitoring jurors on social media consultants can identify the strengths of your case and/or juror misconduct. Technology consulting firms can help with the development of businesses like this looking to have technology work better for them by advancing their strategies, they can use developments such as intelligent automation, which can potentially increase production within their business. Companies such as SDLC Partners may be able to help with this transformation in their businesses and help with any problems that may come up.

Jury Consulting Technology

Lawyers want to know as much information as possible before starting a case. That information extends beyond researching all the evidence, potential witnesses, legislation and case law – it also means knowing how the people in the jury box might respond to potential arguments. While lawyers may want to believe jurors dutifully follow instructions and put their personal feelings aside, often certain gut instincts and opinions kick in when jurors analyze a case and scrutinize witnesses.

Providing this insight is at the core of the work of jury consultants. Such jury consultants remove much of the mystery from jurors’ thought processes, so they are no longer anonymous individuals who offer no clue as to how they might vote.

Online focus groups, as a jury research program, are a low-cost alternative to a traditional in-person focus group or mock trial that firms of all sizes can use to analyze the strength and weaknesses of their cases. Identifying key themes and storylines that resonate with jurors is key. Using custom software, online focus groups demonstrate how a jury views a case. The technology uses live attorney presentations and jury deliberations within a virtual environment, followed by detailed analysis and reporting.

Online focus groups are only one part of the puzzle. Once actual jurors are in place, attorneys want to know what they are thinking. Social media provides insight into how individual jurors see the world, including opinions and biases that may not have come to light during the jury selection process.

Modern technology allows for the monitoring of social media feeds to see if the jurors are discussing the case before, during or after trial. This measures juror compliance with the court’s instructions and also provides information about how they may be feeling about the issues at stake.

MagnaLS also offers an additional edge. With MagnaLS’s Jury Evaluator tool, attorneys can receive a scientifically based assessment of the valuation of a case at a particular time. JuryEvaluator uses algorithms based upon the panel, combined with a number of other value factors, to give lawyers an assessment of a range of damages for their case.

Benefits of Technology in the Courtroom

As legal cases become more complex and clients have more and more at stake, including their reputations, business interests and financial assets, lawyers on both sides are pulling out all the stops to provide the best possible representation. Jury consulting is increasingly part of the normal course of doing business for corporations and law firms; for many, it is no longer optional but required.

In the competitive legal landscape, technology offers a compelling edge for your client. Often, going to court is not the best option; putting the case into the hands of a jury – who will decide not only liability but quantify damages – can be riskier than settling before trial. Tools such as the Jury Evaluator can help you do a risk-benefit analysis and give the best advice to your client, whether making a deal outside of court or proceeding to the next stages of litigation.

In the legal industry, more and more firms are using advanced technology to win cases or effectuate a good settlement. The benefits of the technology are so vast that it is hard not to justify their use. Firms that do not rely on jury consulting services are, more often than not, falling behind legal counsel who use every possible tool to give their clients a competitive advantage.

Learn How Jury Consulting Technology Can Help

MagnaLS works collaboratively with lawyers to provide jury consulting, court reporting, discovery and other legal services. For the best results for your client, look to an end-to-end provider of litigation solutions with the best technology available, contact MagnaLS today!

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Effective Ways a Court Reporter Can Assist in a Case

Savvy attorneys realize a court reporter can be an indispensable resource in evaluating a witness and trial prep in general. While at one time all courtrooms supplied a trained professional to document proceedings in detail, budget cuts and changing priorities have left many legal experts on their own when it comes to securing a reliable transcript of a trial or court hearing.

Court reports offer an unbiased, high-quality record of witness testimony, lawyer motions and objections, and judicial rulings that provide invaluable information as the trial continues or the verdict is appealed at a later date.

What an Experienced Court Reporter Does

Court reporters provide real-time access to a transcript of depositions, hearings and trial proceedings. Using modern technology, they create a written record of every word said during a legal proceedings, including witness questioning in front of a jury or judge. Court reporters are often present during depositions in order to capture the details of testimony as a case unfolds.

Many who work as court reporters are members of the National Court Reporters Association, a body that mandates a code of ethics. Trusted court reporters are unbiased recorders of information and prohibited from showing favor to one side or another. In addition, career court reporters maintain professional decorum by acting professionally at all times, showing little emotion during proceedings and remaining focused on the task at hand.

In cases where witness testimony is central to an attorney’s argument, court transcripts preserve and thus permit detailed cross-examination and impeachment of a witness with his or her own words. When the court record is absent, a witness can simply forget the precise account given during a previous day’s testimony. One person’s version of events may be contrary to another’s. Transcripts are an invaluable tool for lawyers who want to get to the core of what happened.

Talented court reporters offer language and translation services for live testimony and transcribed documents. All members of the profession receive training in legal proceedings and legal language in order to do their jobs efficiently. Multilingual court reporters have the added ability to translate from one language to another with the nuance of the legal environment. Also, an experienced court reporter learns the case and will build a database to make subsequent depositions to make a case run more smoothly.

Learn more about Magna’s language services.

How a Court Reporter Can Be a Difference Maker

Witnesses are often deposed before trial. This is a form of questioning that takes place outside of court, in the presence of attorneys from both sides. Witnesses are under oath and sworn to tell the truth, by the court’s agent- the court reporter, but lawyers can ask questions that may not be admissible under court rules. A deposition is an invaluable way for both sides to get at the information they are looking for and to plan trial strategy.

In order to use this deposition for maximum effect during a trial, lawyers want to present a witness with the testimony provided at a previous date. This is almost impossible without proof of previous testimony. Court reporting is more effective than a poor audio recording, since attorneys can zero in on certain words and phrases the witness used. In addition, relying on recording technology alone is actually time-consuming and more expensive, since a written transcript of an audio recording must still be produced. These written transcripts are also used in court briefs submitted by the parties.

In order to get a good deposition, court reporters can work with legal counsel to ensure the information is conveyed clearly. While remaining objective and professional, court reporters can request that parties refrain from talking over one another and speak clearly so no vital details are missed.

Court Reporters and Technology

Although court reporting has existed for many decades, it has evolved as technology has changed. Many court reporters use a stenotype machine to transcribe proceedings, but it has many modern modifications. Recent advances include connecting the court reporter’s device to a laptop to create real-time closed captions of the testimony or for the benefit of those with hearing impairment.

Some court reporters do their jobs over an internet live stream, allowing them to provide the same services without being in the same room. This is invaluable for depositions taking place in remote areas where it may be difficult to set up proceedings. Use of internet streaming depositions can also be a cost saver as travel costs are not necessary as well as time for travel is saved.

In any event, modern court reporters have extensive training and experience in the technology that makes their job easier and more efficient. Unlike some industries where technology has lagged behind, court reporting has embraced new ways of transcribing and saving information so it can be used in a legal context.

Learn More About Court Reporting Services

Court reporters are respected members of legal teams and the court system. For most, the profession is a long-term career that involves ongoing training and skill development. As resources provided by courts decrease because of declining budgets, law firms and lawyers often have to step in to fill the gap and arrange for their own services.

Given the importance of court reporting, it is essential that you choose not only skilled and experienced individuals, but a firm with extensive resources and a history of taking on the most qualified members of the profession. To learn more about your options for court reporting, translation and video deposition services, contact Magna today.

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Next Level Court Reporting: Why A Video Deposition is Worth It

Whether it’s a civil or criminal matter, court reporting is an essential aspect of winning your case. When breaking down the duties of a court reporter, though, the deposition is often considered to be one of the most important. The deposition ensures that you preserve witness testimony while avoiding any surprises at trial, but not all depositions are created equal. Court reporters that seamlessly provide video deposition services are often the most cost effective providers and in many instances the memorialized video deposition greatly increased the attorney’s chance of success thanks to the numerous benefits provided.

Benefits of a Video Deposition

When it comes to deposition services, video testimony provides the greatest tool for both witness presentation and impeachment. Every litigator has been in the position of having to read deposition designations to point out inconsistent witness testimony or when a witness is unavailable. By and large, jurors can become bored by the monotony of this practice. Also, this does not capture the person who is speaking and thus leaves the “witness” to the juror’s minds eye.

This problem, however, doesn’t exist when a video deposition is available. When you can show the judge or jury the witness speaking clearly into a camera, it becomes much more difficult for said witness to claim they didn’t understand the question or context, or even claim that their words were twisted or misconstrued. Video also provides you the opportunity to protect your own witnesses’ credibility if opposing counsel tries to manipulate what they said.

Additionally, court reporters who provide video deposition services help you gain a more in-depth deposition than with just a transcript alone. Far too often, witnesses will get off track when speaking during a written deposition. Their and their attorney’s knowledge that jury members will never see the actual conversation sometimes results in getting off the subject and a meandering testimony. When everyone understands that the deposition will be recorded, though, they’re more likely to “stick to the script.”

This allows you to streamline the deposition and come away with a cleaner transcript for use at trial or briefing. Depositions can last as long as necessary, but having the ever-watchful eye of a video camera motivates everyone involved to focus on getting all of the pertinent facts committed to evidence in a timely manner.

Paper Depositions & Video Depositions

While video deposition services provide a variety of benefits on their very own, the actual power of video becomes far more apparent when compared to paper depositions. One need only look at basic human psychology and brain functioning when comparing video depositions to their paper counterparts. Science has shown that the human brain processes video 60,000 times faster than it does text.

What this means is that judges and juries will be able to get a deeper understanding of what’s going on instantaneously. Fortunately, this benefit doesn’t just extend to judges and jury members. You will also be able to review a deposition and prepare your case in a more time-efficient manner than if you tried to sit down and pore back through volumes of written statements. And as any attorney can rightly attest to, time is money in the legal field.

In addition to being more cost-efficient by allowing you to more effectively use your preparation time, video deposition services also save on costs thanks to the ability to present testimony from witnesses whose location or medical condition makes bringing them into court both financially and logistically prohibitive.

Maybe the biggest benefit of video depositions over paper depositions, though, is the ability to gain a deeper understanding of testimony by viewing body language. If you read a statement that says “I didn’t owe her any money” in court, it doesn’t say nearly as much as seeing the witness saying the same thing while rolling their eyes, sucking their teeth, and acting otherwise dismissive or insulting.

No matter what, being able to view a witness’s body language in addition to their words can speak volumes. This is why good court reporters will always use high-quality video depositions — preferably with multi-camera views so courtrooms will have every vantage point possible.

Video Depositions Are at the Forefront of Technology

Like most great industry tools, video deposition services don’t stop at basic functions. As technology evolves, so do video depositions. At Magna, for instance, the most up-to-date technology is utilized to provide video teleconferencing (VTC) and/or internet streaming services when performing video depositions via the Magna Legal Vision platform.

Since businesses using VTC and similar services reduce travel expenses by 30 percent, these techniques are beneficial both economically and technologically. In addition to utilizing the most advanced aspects of video technology, Magna also offers multimedia depositions. This means that trial exhibits can be displayed directly to the deposed while they’re offering a statement.

On top of all of this, the multimedia advancements utilized by Magna allow witnesses to annotate exhibits as they’re being deposed. This can turn into a powerful tool later at trial when the court sees the witness writing their own words via touchscreen monitors in relation to the exhibit at hand. And if this wasn’t enough, just imagine how powerful these multimedia tools can be in the hands of expert witnesses.

Video Deposition Is the Right Move

After utilizing video deposition services, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll ever want to switch back to paper and ink. Benefits, which range from pretrial to closing arguments, are just too numerous to overlook. Make sure you find a court reporter who offers video depositions in addition to the other tools you’d expect from a professional legal service agency.

For full-service court reporting services that provide video depositions, contact Magna today.

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4 Secrets to Ensuring Court Reporting Expertise

secrets-to-ensureing-court-reportingLegal experts rely on information to make their case. It is therefore essential that all kinds of information, from historical documents to eyewitness accounts, be properly documented. Without proper documentation, lawyers may lose crucial pieces of the evidence puzzle. In addition, discovery that is not properly documented may not be admissible into a court or may introduce mistakes into the evidence analyzed by both sides in litigation.

Given the importance of court reporting, it’s no surprise that individuals who perform this work take their jobs seriously. Like any profession, however, court reporting firms and their personnel fall on all points of the spectrum of expertise. To make sure that your legal team gets the benefit of premier court reporting, to safeguard the strength of your case and protect your clients’ interests, ask these four questions before contracting for services.

Do They Use the Latest Technology?

Court reporting has evolved significantly over the past three decades. Expert reporters have remained up-to-date on the latest technology and use it to provide expedient, accurate and secure transcripts. While in the early days reporters would take manual shorthand or repeat testimony verbally into a machine, now they make use of digital recordings.

Court reporters may use a variety of high-tech methods. They may monitor and annotate digital recordings and ensure the accuracy of a transcript. Many court reporters do not need to be in the room while testimony is taken, as they stream the proceedings live over an internet connection. These kinds of innovations ensure there is a human being to confirm the content of the transcripts, while relying on the advances of modern technology. When hiring court reporters, you want them to be fast, reliable and accurate.

Are They Part of a Full Service Agency?

Law firms that contract for court reporting services have a full suite of needs. Complex litigation requires not only discovery, but all elements of investigating and building a case. Instead of undertaking a time-consuming and expensive process to find an agency that provides all necessary services, it’s preferable to contract with one company to supply everything you need.

Look for an agency that is not limited to court reporting services. Ask if they also go the extra mile and provide expert service in the areas of record retrieval, courtroom setup services, language translation services, video services and others. Knowing they offer everything you may need means you won’t be left scrambling before a tight court deadline to pull together essential evidence.

Are They a Member of the NCRA?

Dedicated court reporters understand the necessity of properly transcribing the spoken word. As evidence of this commitment, many court reporting firms and individuals are members of the National Court Reporting Association. This association has existed for more than a century and offers education and training programs to ensure members meet the highest standards of the profession.

In addition to high educational and training standards, members of the NCRA adhere to a Code of Professional Ethics. This sets out obligations for ethical conduct toward the public, the bench and the bar. A firm that hires a member of the NCRA, therefore, can rest assured the court reporting has been done in a fair and objective way that both legal counsel and the court can trust.

What Areas Do They Service?

Litigation work happens wherever evidence needs to be gathered. Often, this means lawyers drive many miles into remote areas or have to go to a trial location mandated by the court. Local court reporting services may not have the resources to get where you need them to be, especially on short notice. Even if they are able to fly into town or drive to the site of the deposition or trial, they will likely bill your firm for travel time and accommodation costs.

Ask whether the court reporting service has personnel ready and available within your state and city, so you don’t have to worry about delays. Magna has a broad reach throughout the U.S., so you can rest assured your professional court reporter will be on hand with reasonable notice.

Magna offers clients many benefits apart from its large reserves of professional talent. The firm has experienced people, having been in the industry for a number of years. It has kept pace with changing times in the court reporting industry, using up-to-date software and technology to offer premier services to clients.

Choose the Right Court Reporting Solution

As legal counsel, you have a responsibility to your client to provide the best possible representation. While in-depth legal research and solid arguments are fundamental to making the case for your client, it is also essential that every witness’s testimony is properly documented. In front of a jury or a judge, a case can turn on a single word, and you want to know that evidence has been deposed and recorded in a way that is accurate and objective.

The choice of a court reporting firm is an important one for your firm. With the right services, you can provide your best work to clients who rely on you to safeguard their interests. Learn more about our court reporting services to see if we’re the right solution for you.

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5 Frequent Mistakes of Untrained Court Reporters

court reporter mistakes

Court reporters are essential team members during any litigation process, tasked with recording the exact testimony of witnesses during a deposition and at trial. Court reporting requires substantial legal knowledge, detailed attention, and professional decorum.

Since legal counsel and decision-makers in a court rely heavily on accuracy, it is essential that the position of court reporter is respected. Part of demonstrating that respect is choosing to hire a court reporter that is trained and committed to meeting high standards of accuracy.

If you are assessing candidates, look out for these signs that a court reporter is untrained.

1. Failing to Review Industry Technology

Court reporting is a complex job. In order to properly document information, court reporters must understand the terminology used in a particular context. Only with that advanced knowledge can they be certain they are recording the proper phrases and abbreviations that leave no doubt about the accuracy of the document they create. Accuracy is part of what attorneys contract for when they hire a court reporting service.

A trained and prepared court reporter will meet the challenge of recording industry-specific terminology. A seasoned court reporter will demonstrate foresight into the particular case by arriving for the session with a list of standard industry acronyms, or will not appear flustered at the use of obscure terminology because he or she will already have sufficient familiarity with the area.

2. Failing to Control Emotions

All participants in the court process, including legal counsel and court staff, are witness to emotionally difficult facts. Often, witnesses convey events that are tragic and upsetting. However, in the professional context, it is the job of the servants of the court to remain committed to the task at hand. This is true even if human nature would sometimes move them to facial expressions that convey sympathy, disgust, sadness or another emotion.

Court reporters must remain unbiased observers, recorders of witness testimony at trial and in depositions. Regardless of the length of an individual court reporter’s experience, he or she should be able to remain calm and focused. Professional decorum is essential in order to make sure the reporter accurately records all elements of the trial. If a court reporter is not composed, it is a sign he or she is unable or unwilling to separate personal emotions from the job.

Worried about finding the right court reporter? Come explore our 4 secrets for ensuring court reporting expertise today!

3. Eating During the Trial

Legal counsel and juries often have to prepare for a long time in court without a break. Likewise, a professional court reporter will use his or her knowledge and experience to assess how long testimony is expected to last. Advanced planning means the court reporter can ensure he or she eats enough before trial begins so there is no snacking while evidence is being presented.

There is a time and place to eat and regroup. During the deposition or trial is not that time. Eating demonstrates disrespect to the court or deposition proceedings, which officials will not appreciate. It will reflect poorly on the counsel who brought the reporter into the situation. In addition, court reporters have to be using their hands at all times in order to not miss any testimony.

4. Failing to Show Up On Time

Court reporters who arrive late will cost you money. An expensive expert may be on-hand, paid by the hour, waiting for the reporter to arrive. In litigation, everyone’s time is valuable. That includes your time as an attorney, as well as that of opposing counsel and the court. Judges and court officials, or other professionals present at a deposition, will not stand to have their time wasted. If a court reporter is consistently late, it indicates he or she does not understand that punctuality is essential to perform the job appropriately. Tardiness reflects poorly on everyone involved.

5. Failing to Be Technologically Prepared

Court reporters should be trained and equipped with the latest software in the industry and prepare in advance for any technological mishaps.

The court reporter will arrive with a fully charged computer so there is no risk of scrambling for a power outlet while the trial is ongoing. He or she will have an alternative option available to perform duties if necessary in case the first computer fails. In all cases, the court reporter will do everything possible to remain self-sufficient and completely focused on the task at hand.

Choose a Firm of Trained Court Reporters

If you hire the right court reporting service, you should never have to witness these lapses in efficiency. An established and credentialed court reporting service offers not only assurances of quality work, but a team of experts that are dedicated to the accurate documentation of information.

Take a few moments to assess your court reporting options before you need to use them and choose the agency that’s right for you. When you are ready, learn more about our court reporting services and contact us for a free quote.

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