The way to play it safe in law school was to raise and explain every possible issue. If five arguments supported a particular result, you had better discuss them all. Civil and criminal classes support this type of issue spotting, and some law firms believe this works in litigation. But, this law school training works against you at trial.
The following is an interview with one of America's greatest trial lawyers, Randi McGinn. She is a member of the Inner Circle of Advocates an invitation-only group of the 100 best trial lawyers in America, and author of the Trial Guides book Changing Laws, Saving Lives.
Randi McGinn on Changing Laws, Saving Lives
Trial Guides: What made you want to write Changing Laws, Saving Lives?
Randi McGinn: I didn’t think there was a book out that gave you a feel for what it’s like to be in a case as a lawyer. And so, it was written for lawyers who are just starting out, lawyers who are experienced (because it has advice for them too), and people who think they might want to be lawyers.
If you are a professor of trial advocacy, you train the trial lawyers of the future. While many books purport to educate young trial lawyers on trial procedure and trial techniques, few guide law students and new lawyers through the common behavioral and psychological mistakes that can undermine a promising career.
With Becoming a Trial Lawyer, author Rick Friedman has written a book that does both. Friedman, a member of the Inner Circle of Advocates, guides future lawyers on their career path, weighing in on the pros and cons of being a trial lawyer, and explaining how to lead a healthy, balanced life in a field where career largely dominates. In addition, the book is filled with tips from Friedman's trial career.