I was asked that question today.
It is a good question: why would a guy doing injury law/ trial law going on 3 decades– 30 years now– go to trial lawyer college for 1 month?
Like anything else, if you are not working to get better at something, you are probably falling behind.
I want to be the very best injury lawyer/ people lawyer I can be.
To do a little bragging I was one of only 50 lawyers selected to participate in the country’s very best trial lawyer program.
I could not turn down the opportunity to work with one of the best trial lawyers of all time– Gerry Spence, now 84 years old, full of wisdom and incredibly sharp, brilliant and, above all, real.
I also got to work with members of his staff. Every week about 10 of the nation’s most successful trial lawyers came to work with us. These men and women are truly the best of the best. Their results with juries are spectacular. The kind of verdicts achieved speak for themselves.
Working hard every day– doing, not talking– with these lawyers was incredibly challenging and grueling, but very rewarding. It was all hands-on, creative, and spontaneous.
I like sports analogies. A team gets better when it faces tough competition. When we press ourselves and push ourselves and work hard, we become better– it is that simple.
When the program ended, after a month of very hard work, there is no doubt that I became a better lawyer, on the way–even at my age of 54– to becoming the best lawyer I can be. And, because there was a heavy emphasis on ” working on the horse” I became a better person– one who cares, loves and listens to his clients.
As Gerry Spence is known to say: ” Caring is contagious.” If a lawyer does not care about his client, he cannot expect the jury to do that which he cannot do– care about his client.
It is not enough for a lawyer to say he cares. A performance is not the same as telling and connecting with a truthful story. The jury can always spot a phony.
Few cases ever see a courtroom and a jury trial. The goal should always be to settle. But the best way to get the best settlement is for the lawyer to be fully armed and prepared for a jury trial.
And we worked hard everyday on jury trial stuff.
I will be blogging more about my experience at the college and on my participation in future programs with the college. This is a life-long experience and blood brother and sister-hood.
We are a family for life, connected at the hip professionally and personally.
I am very proud to be a ” Warrior For Justice.”
For me, it works.
It is not a knock on anybody else or their skills.
This is about me being the best me I can be for my clients.