What is a Mock Trial and What Are The Benefits To Having One?

Rafael Roxas
Mar 31, 2021

Close-up of a Gavel with a Judge Signing a Document Behind It-1

According to the American Bar, many litigators rarely see the inside of a courtroom. For the few cases that do proceed through trial, preparation is key. As a business, the last thing you want to do is to hire a team that isn’t prepared. Mock trials are a great tool that helps prepare legal professionals, consultants, and counsel for the stand by simulating a civic or criminal trial, complete with witnesses, plaintiffs, and everything in between. In the process, the strengths and weaknesses of your case are often revealed which allow you to prepare the best version necessary to guarantee success.

Hosting mock trials is important for many reasons, but here are 4 of the best benefits as elaborated by the Employment Law Solution, a woman and minority-owned law firm dedicated to providing results-oriented employment law services that proactively and defensively provide better protection of a company’s bottom line.

1. To Determine How A Story Will Resonate

To determine how a story will resonate in the trial, attorneys rely on case theories that outline the proper structures of an argument. The goal is to appeal to the jury using key facts and clear statements that break down the law in a way that sways favor and leads to understanding. The mock trial setting is the perfect opportunity to evaluate these theories and see if they hold true. By presenting them in a mock trial beforehand, you are able to gauge the strength of your arguments and foresee any logical holes that could damage the credibility of your case. Without this preemptive measure in place, businesses run the risk of losing a trial that could have easily been won with adequate preparation.

2. To See The Case From The Other Party’s Perspective

While you and your team will be attempting to persuade the jury using your story, the opposing party will be trying to persuade the jury using theirs. Hosting a mock trial provides you the opportunity to see possible theories that could be used by the other side. This advanced analysis of an opponent’s case assists you in identifying where disputes will arise and allows you to determine weaknesses that can be used against you and strengths that you could use against them. Since the end goal is to convince the jury of the plausibility of your argument, getting as much information as you can before the official trial is a valuable asset that cannot be overlooked.

3.To Identify The Strengths and Weaknesses Of A Case

At the end of a mock trial, attorneys have the opportunity to discuss the results with the mock jurors, similarly to how it usually occurs in an actual trial. Mock jurors can reveal which party they believed and why, what facts were most important to their decision, how they understood the case and its issues, and what you could possibly do to improve your arguments. Awareness of these factors can then be used to finetune your presentation so that you can either repeat the circumstances that led to your victory or avoid the instances that led to your defeat. In a way, mock trials are battles that you have to overcome in order to win the valuable war.

4. To Practice and Improve Trial Skills

There are many facets to a trial that attorneys have to perfect. Unfortunately, taking the time to do so in actual cases is a risky experiment that could be detrimental to your clients. With a mock trial, your counsel can practice opening and closing arguments, examining witnesses through direct and cross-examinations, presenting evidence, arguing motions, and observing proper courtroom decorum. Allowing them the opportunity to practice breeds comfortability that could directly influence the confidence with which they present a case. It is, after all, much more convincing to listen to an argument that is well-prepared rather than one that is shaky and filled with nerves. So while mock trials are an added expense that some may consider hard to justify, they are often necessary to guarantee that a case has a promising future.

How To Hold A Mock Jury Trial

Going into the new normal, hosting a mock jury trial in-person has become difficult. Fortunately, Civicom Research Services, a leading global partner in facilitating telephone and web-enabled interviews, has introduced a secure solution that can help you transition your mock jury trials online. Find out more about how Mock Jury Trials Online works.

Need more information to fuel your decision? In collaboration with Greenbook, we wrote an article that elaborates on what services you need to move your mock trials forward. Check it out!

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