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Paralegal 101: Trial Management Basics

When it comes to trial management, details are very much the key. From initial client communications to judgment day, every single step in the process involves specific procedural details that every litigation paralegal should know. While these might be unseen to the average person, these could mean the difference between winning and losing a case.

Managing Documents

It’s your job to put together a solid case file. You need to create a system for managing documents to make it easy for you and the lawyers assigned to the case to check the evidence, briefs, citations, pleadings, and other documents relevant to the case.

The Center For Legal Studies and instructors in paralegal studies in NYC remind that each court uses its own rules to manage trials, which you could obtain from court clerks. These rules could change without prior notice, so it’s your job to keep track of them.

Organizing and Producing Evidence

If you’re tasked to work with court clerks, especially for entering evidence as official trial exhibits, you need to stay on top of things and make certain that nothing is misplaced or lost during the trial. You might also need to think of ways to present certain items or facts that require clarification or to help draw the jury and judge’s attention to them in a way that would be beneficial to the case.

Monitoring the Progress of the Trial

During the trial, you need to keep notes of relevant things that lawyers could refer to. This is to make certain that the case moves forward in a manner that aligns with your legal team’s initial strategy.

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Your notes would be helpful for altering the case strategy or reinforcing certain arguments that are not having the desired effect. It’s also a good idea to keep notes of how the jury or judge responds to specific arguments, keeping a close eye on their gestures and facial expressions to try, and gauge if the points your team presented had the intended effect.

Put simply, trial management ensures that your case goes on as planned. You could do this by ensuring that your team conforms to all legal procedures, appearances, filings, and other relevant court procedures. Done right, you help make certain that your team stay on course and eventually win the case.

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