Liability & Damages Analysis

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Liability & Damages Analysis

Liability & Damages Analysis

Of the array of services provided by Magnus, methods designed to address liability and damages issues are the most frequently utilized. Liability and damages evaluations are designed around the parameters of the case. Case complexity, number of parties, research timing (pre-mediation or pre-trial), and damages potential are among the variables which relate to determining the scope of the project. Research methods involve an adversarial approach with arguments on behalf of the plaintiff(s) and defendant(s). Demonstrative evidence and witness testimony can also be tested by using the methods listed below.

Case Strength Evaluation Research

Case Strength Evaluation Research is designed to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of a case prior to mediation or trial. Magnus gathers and analyzes detailed information about plaintiff and defense positions with regard to liability and damages. Both qualitative and quantitative methodologies are utilized. Research format depends on case complexity, the research goals, and budgetary concerns. A detailed, four-stage questionnaire is utilized to measure individual responses to arguments over time. Live or videotaped arguments are made in a brief combined opening statement and closing argument format. Group deliberations are monitored and videotaped for review and analysis. A post verdict focusing session is conducted in order to probe issues raised during deliberations.

Mock Trial Research

Mock Trials are the most comprehensive of the qualitative methods used for case evaluation and are usually the culmination of prior research. A Mock Trial allows for the rehearsal of voir dire, opening and closing statements, and lengthy presentations by both the plaintiff and defense. The case is presented with live or previously recorded witness testimony and demonstrative evidence. A detailed, four-stage questionnaire is utilized to measure individual responses to arguments over time. Group deliberations are then monitored and videotaped for review and analysis. Questions which probe specific areas of concern raised by deliberations may be posed during a post verdict focusing group session.

Bench Trial/Arbitration Panel Simulations

Mock Bench Trials or Mock Arbitration Panels can be utilized to evaluate the likely decision making process of the actual triers of fact. Plaintiff and defense presentations are made to individuals similar to the judge or arbitrators. Several surrogate triers of fact are utilized to provide input which is then compiled to form the basis for Magnus’ feedback and recommendations. The structure may include either abbreviated case overview statements or more elaborate presentations with opening statements, witness testimony, and closing arguments. Retired judges or arbitrators who are not involved in the case are utilized for this research. Participants render individual decisions as well as engage in group discussions.

Mediation Rehearsal & Coaching

Mock mediations consist of plaintiff and defense presentations to a panel of surrogate mediators. Prior to engaging in a discussion session, the mediators are asked to individually report their impressions of the attorney presentations and of the case facts, in writing. Magnus then works with the client as he or she prepares for the actual mediation.

Opening/Closing Statement Consultation

Magnus’ Litigation Consultants are available to assist in the preparation of opening arguments and closing statements. The Litigation Consultants who provide this service are experienced litigators. Their expertise enhances the client’s efforts due to the breadth of the consultants’ knowledge or experience.

Silhouette Jury Panel

Magnus offers the Silhouette Jury Panel to provide day to day analysis of a trial’s progress. Silhouette Jurors are recruited to closely approximate the characteristics of actual jurors. They observe the trial alongside the jury and form their opinions on the evidence and provide daily feedback to the attorney in the form of a structured interview conducted by the Consultant. This intense analysis provides the attorney with an opportunity to refine his or her case on a daily basis to ensure the best result for his or her client. Furthermore, when the real jurors are permitted to ask questions, the Magnus team facilitating the Silhouette Jury Panel will work with the trial team to evaluate the nature and underlying issues raised when the jurors pose their questions.

Trial Progress Evaluation

Similar to the Silhouette Jury Panel, Trial Progress Evaluation provides a day by day analysis of the trial. In Trial Progress Evaluation, the trial is observed by one of Magnus’ Research Associates or Consultants instead of Silhouette Jury panel members. Like the Silhouette Jury Panel, utilizing Magnus’ assistance to monitor the trial can be beneficial in a number of ways and is especially helpful in interpreting questions raised by the jurors, where permitted.

Post Verdict Interviews

Post Verdict Interviews, when permitted by the Court, provide a wealth of information to the trial team. Determining how the actual jury reached its decision in a case can be most helpful in retrying cases which have been lost, mistried, overturned on appeal, or when a series of related cases is being tried.