How To Organize Documents For Court

by Robert Loughry | Oct 25, 2018 4:07:00 PM | Litigation Services, Trial Presentation

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When taking a case to court, it’s important to have evidence, exhibits, and key documents readily accessible. The less time you spend searching for the items you need, the more time you can spend arguing the merits of the case. Plus, powerful evidence can lose some of its impact if the jury is left waiting for you to find the items you need. At A. William Roberts, Jr. & Associates (AWR), we turn effective trial presentation into an artform. Here are some basic tips on how to organize documents for court.

Working From Paper

While the world is moving toward “going green,” understandably not everything can be digitized. There are going to be some documents that you want to hand to the witness while asking questions. If you work primarily from printed documents, it can be helpful to use a trial binder for your potential exhibits. Make sure each document has an easy to find tab or placeholder so you can find it when you need it.

Digital Evidence Binders

A growing number of lawyers throughout the country are using digital document management software to organize their documents for court. With this seamless technology, a lawyer can be virtually free from paper at a hearing or trial, while having the power of thousands of documents and images at their fingertips.

  • Powerful Indexing. By taking all of your exhibits and uploading them to a cloud-based software program, you can ensure that your items will be there when you need them. There’s no risk of a page being lost or stuck somewhere else in a binder.
  • Better Cross-Examinations.  Many experienced attorneys have been in the uncomfortable position of trying to respond to a witness’s remarks, only to desperately need a specific document. Perhaps there’s impeaching information in a key document. Perhaps the witness just contradicted deposition testimony or discovery responses. Having a properly indexed and easily accessible document management program allows you to instantly search for the document without clumsily flipping through hundreds of pages on a table.
  • Tablet Compatible. When your documents are organized electronically, you are able to use a tablet or laptop during hearings and court appearances. Imagine being able to attend a motion hearing or even a trial with nothing but a couple of folders and a computer. Technology is moving in this direction and we are very close to being able to try cases without paper.

AWR is proud to offer a free online litigation repository. View our case management tool.

Organizing Key Evidence

Ultimately, you should try to organize your trial evidence, whether by paper or electronic means, in the order in which you plan to use them at your court appearance. Doing so can take a lot of advanced planning and careful preparation.

Get Help With Your Trial Presentations

The dedicated team at A. William Roberts, Jr. & Associates can work closely with you and your firm to build trial exhibits, establish powerful document management, and help you create an amazing presentation to win your case. Contact us today to schedule a deposition or to discuss your litigation and presentation needs.

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