When Louisiana Advocates Magazine published an article “DIY Courtroom Tech for the Trial Lawyer” by trial lawyer, David Pitre, we saw it and had to talk to David. We asked him about how he uses TrialPad and got a few additional tips and tricks for our readers like you. Here are three standouts from David’s article, and our conversation:
When we spoke with David, one of his keys to an excellent DIY presentation is the DIY aspect itself. When a lawyer can present the case for themselves, they are fully in control, whereas there is an inherent delay in asking someone else to bring up a particular page, and then tell them to either go to the next page, highlight a paragraph, etc. David knows this from experience - both his own previous experience in electronic trials, and his more recent experience watching various opposing counsels’ presentation delays. DIY helps David present evidence smoothly and seamlessly as he talks to witnesses, judges, and juries.
David chooses to use TrialPad because it lets him hold his entire case on a device the size of a legal pad, and gives him the power to put up a document, zoom, callout or annotate it as he discusses it. He also chooses TrialPad because it is straightforward, and easy to use. In fact, David says using TrialPad is “effortless”.
Because David brings his own equipment to the courtroom, and uses it to practice in the office beforehand, he avoids the possible pitfall of being unfamiliar with the physical presentation equipment. Bringing his own equipment means scheduling a setup time in advance, taking a look at the courtroom he’ll be in, finding the outlets, and testing the equipment. Some courts have equipment installed already, and plugging in and testing ahead of time is a good idea for those courtrooms too. Even still, David also also always has a backup plan. Should a cable go bad, he has another. By being prepared, David can be assured that when it is trial time, he can focus on the art of the trial itself, with little concern for the technology.
While presenting your case well is an achievement, sometimes the best parts of a trial come at the end. In David’s case the best parts include more than the verdict he hoped for. On many occasions judges, juries, and even opposing counsel have complimented David’s presentation style, and the seamless use of technology to present his case. Preparation, and the right tools are some of the keys to his success.
David is a partner with Silbert, Garon, Pitre & Friedman, and practices exclusively in the area of personal injury and wrongful death for accident victims and their families throughout the Gulf-South region. David is based in Gulfport, Mississippi.