Freelance litigation attorney, Erin Stagg, recently wrote an article that was published in the January, 2013 issue of the Riverside Lawyer Magazine. The article, titled “Junior Associates and Jury Trials,” discusses the importance of exposing junior associates to the trial process. According to Erin, junior associates, law firms, and their clients, benefit from involving junior associates in big picture concepts, like creating case themes, as early as possible in their careers.
Erin Stagg is currently a freelance/contract litigation attorney affiliated with Montage Legal Group, and handles all stages of litigation. Erin is located in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Below is an introduction to her article, but for the full article, please visit see the Riverside Lawyer Magazine, January 2013 issue.
My jury trial experience significantly influenced my approach to discovery, dispositive motions, and handling client expectations, among other things. For example, having senior partners include me in trial strategy sessions taught me not only to identify the case theme, but also how to marshal the evidence to best support the theme. Assisting with direct and cross-examination outlines and analyzing possible issues for impeachment shaped my approach to depositions. And my time spent reviewing form jury instructions and drafting special instructions informed my approach to considering, in discovery, how to prove all of the elements of a claim or affirmative defense. Jury trial participation undoubtedly teaches one about trial procedures, verdict forms, voir dire, witness examination, and the importance of good team members and a steady supply of coffee. And the procedures and mechanics of trial practice are an essential part of effective advocacy. However, that procedural knowledge is most helpful within the context of a developed case theme, case strategy, and overall understanding of the case.
Read more in the Riverside Lawyer Magazine, January 2013 issue.
Erin graduated from U.C. Berkeley in 2003 with a B.A. in Political Science. She obtained her JD from U.C. Berkeley Law School in 2007. Erin began her legal career at the San Francisco office of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips as a litigation associate specializing in complex commercial litigation and representing policy-holders in insurance recovery disputes. Erin then joined Stubbs & Leone, a Bay Area firm specializing in public entity representation. Erin is currently a freelance litigation lawyer affiliated with Montage Legal Group. For more information on using Erin for a litigation project, please contact [email protected]