Jim King

The Trial Techniques and Tactics Committee has a proud history within the IADC, and I am honored to be the Committee’s current Chair. The Trial Techniques and Tactics Committee (or the TTTC as we like to call it) promotes the development of trial skills and assists in the application of those skills to substantive areas of trial practice. Our leaders and members include some of the most distinguished and outstanding trial lawyers in the United States and, indeed, the world.

There is an age-old question that litigators have asked: What would you rather have, the law on your side, the facts on your side, or Abraham Lincoln as your lawyer? While most of us will never rise to the heights of trial advocacy as Abraham Lincoln, the fact of the matter is that trial lawyers are not born. They are made. Of course you need talent and intellect. But effective trial advocacy can be learned. Trial skills can be studied, practiced, and debated. Watching trials, reviewing transcripts, studying leading texts, practicing and practicing again, and then doing – all of these can make one a good, even an excellent, trial lawyer.

The activities of the TTTC are with these thoughts in mind. Together, our members learn what to do, and as importantly, what not to do, at trial. Among other topics, we address jury selection, the evidentiary rules, effective ways to conduct a direct or cross examination, good and bad graphics and demonstratives, diversity on your trial team, how best to get your point across to the judge, effective oral advocacy techniques, body language, and even how to dress when you appear in court. These are things we discuss and debate in the TTTC.

The TTTC has a number of upcoming programs we hope you will find of interest. At the 2018 Midyear Meeting, for example, the TTTC is sponsoring or co-sponsoring several CLE programs, including Coverage Issues for Non-Coverage Counsel (Sunday, February 11, at 7:30 a.m.); Waking Up Your Jury with Creative Demonstrative Exhibits (Tuesday, February 13, at 7:30 a.m.); and Making Sure Your Appellate Record Goes Platinum (Wednesday, February 14, at 7:30 a.m.). Watch for upcoming Webinars on various subjects important to trial attorneys. And please spend a few moments reviewing our monthly newsletter, which contains thoughtful articles and tips on improving your trial skills.

If you are interested in getting more involved or participating in the TTTC, please join our monthly calls, which are held the third Wednesday of each month at 5:00 p.m. Eastern/4:00 p.m. Central. Or email me at jking@porterwright.com.

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