Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters - Court Reporting, Legal Videos, and Videoconferencing

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Court Reporting, Legal Videography, and Trial Presentation Services Tips, Tricks, and Tidbits from Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters: Focus Groups

 

Welcome to court reporting, legal videography, and trial presentation services tips, tricks and tidbits from Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters.  Each month, we will be providing some insight or thought on a particular litigation support service.  Hopefully, you find these posts and videos informative and come back each month for additional content!

 

This week we will be discussing focus groups.  Below are several tips, tricks, and tidbits we have learned over the years by conducting our own focus groups.  In the event you have questions or want to learn more, please reach out to our office.  We would be happy to talk with you. 

 

Focus groups can be conducted in many different ways.  From deciding whether a case is worth taking, all the way to a mock trial, focus groups can be beneficial to your case regardless of where you are at in it.  Below are just a few examples of why you might want to conduct a focus group:

 

  • Case development:
    • Know whether a case is worth taking
    • Develop facts
    • Determine which expert you are going to need to hire
    • Prepare information for a deposition or mediation
  • Mock trial
    • Prospective jury’s perception of your client or witness
    • Practice voir dire, openings and closings
    • Gain insight into the deliberation process

 

In my experience, though, you should try and stay away from using focus groups to determine a dollar amount for your case. 

 

One of the most important things to remember when conducting a focus group is to remain neutral, both in presentation and in setup.  Here at Thomas & Thomas, we offer a neutral, third-party location so the participants do not know who is conducting the focus group.  If you conduct it at law firm, they may come into the focus group with a preconceived notion of who you are and what you are trying to accomplish.  We also issue the checks to the participants so that everything comes from our office and not a law firm.  If our clients desire, we will also present the facts of your case.  This ensures that your biasness does not interject itself into the presentation of the materials. 

 

Other important things to consider are making sure you have a true representation of your eventual jury and having the participants signs confidentiality agreements.  You will want to provide snacks and/or meals to the participant to ensure they stay happy and engaged.  Regular breaks also help keep them focused.  We like to provide forms and notepads that you can collect at the end of the focus group, as each participant may respond differently to the setting.  These options allow you to capture the thoughts of a quite participant that you may not hear from much when conducting the focus group.  Being able to record the session for future playback is immensely important.  Often times people tell me that they learn something new each time they rewatch the video.  You may also want to consider streaming the session to another room so non-participating individuals can observe the session without affecting it.  Streaming is also a great way to allow the participants to “deliberate” during a mock trial and still be able to observe their thoughts and feelings in real time.  

 

Focus groups can be wildly entertaining and informative if presented in the right manner, and we hope you are now better positioned to do just that. 

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Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters Provides A/V Equipment Rental for Trial at Douglas County Courthouse

Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters Provides A/V Equipment Rental for Trial at Douglas County Courthouse

Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters is excited to be providing A/V support for a three-day trial at the Douglas County Courthouse this week.  Thomas & Thomas brought in four monitors, a large screen TV, ELMO document camera, and a matrix switch so the parties can present their cases in an efficient, digital manner.  Said A/V equipment can be used to show exhibits, videos, and PowerPoints to the jury, counsels’ tables, and the judge. 

Don’t feel comfortable running the equipment?  Need additional tools like trial presentation software (i.e. TrialDirector, Sanction, etc.)?  Thomas & Thomas has you covered.   Our trained trial technicians can assist you at your next trial, ensuring everything runs smoothly and the jury’s attention is kept.  Contact us today to learn more about our court reporting, legal videography, and trial services. 

 

AV Equipment Rental Douglas County Courthouse Omaha

 

AV Equipment Rental Douglas County Courthouse Omaha2

 

 

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Trial Presentation Services in LeMars, Iowa Leads to Defense Verdict

Trial Presentation Services in LeMars, Iowa Leads to Defense Verdict

Last month, Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters were asked to provide trial presentation services for two-week trial at the Plymouth County Courthouse in LeMars, Iowa.  Specifically, defense counsel needed assistance working with MRI images and a radiologist to counter plaintiff’s contention of what the images showed.  For those who have worked with medical imaging software, you know this process can be difficult and unpredictable.  That is where Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters came in.  We worked with the doctor to select the best images and how we might present them in the best way.  Ultimately, we decided between a joint effort of trial technician, doctor, and ELMO document camera operated by the attorney.  With all of the A/V equipment being run through our trial technician, switching between sources was seamless and the elicited testimony proved dispositive in the jury returning a defense verdict. 

Whether it is court reporting, videotaped depositions, or trial presentation services, consider using Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters the next time you need litigation support services.  With over 40 years of experience, we know how to get the job done right. 

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A/V EQUIPMENT RENTALS FOR COURTROOMS AND ARBITRATIONS

 

ELMO Document CameraTelevision

 

Whether you need to rent A/V equipment for a trial, a hearing, or an arbitration, Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters can help.  Our team of trained professionals will provide you with the highest quality, cutting-edge courtroom equipment available, all well below the traditional rental rate.  Available in Omaha, Lincoln, Nebraska and Iowa.

Thomas & Thomas has the following items for rent:

  • Televisions (50")
  • Monitors
  • Projectors
  • Projector Screens (100")
  • ELMO Document Cameras
  • Distribution Amplifiers ("DAs")
  • A/V Switches
  • Speakers
  • POLYCOM Speakerphones
  • Tables

Thomas & Thomas is a great alternative when the court's equipment is unavailable, at a price significantly less than other local equipment rental vendors.

 

RELIABLE TECHNOLOGY, EXPERT SUPPORT

Often times courtrooms and other litigation matters require a specific knowledge of who needs to view what materials in order to present the most effective case.  With over 40 years of experience in the legal field, Thomas & Thomas has the ability to provide you with the ideal setup for your specific needs.  We coordinate courtroom setups with judges and their staff to ensure an expert and delay-free presentation.  

 

PACKAGE RENTALS & TRIAL PRESENTATION SERVICES DISCOUNTS

Choose from the following packaged rentals to save money:

  • Basic Courtroom Package (50" Television and ELMO Document Camera)
  • Premier Courtroom Package (50" Television, ELMO Document Camera, 4 Monitors, and an A/V Switch)

Also available: a rental discount when you rent equipment in conjunction with hiring one of our Trial Presentation Services Specialists to assist with the displaying of exhibits, demonstratives, and videotaped depositions at trial.

Call Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters when you need top-of-the-line A/V equipment for your next matter:

  • Courtrooms
  • War Rooms
  • Arbitrations
  • Depositions
  • Focus Groups
  • Mock Trials

Thomas & Thomas Court Reporters is leading the way in court reporting and litigation support technology, and we welcome the opportunity to assist you with any needs you may have. If you would like to learn more about videoconferencing, mobile videoconferencing, trial presentation services, and/or focus groups, please do not hesitate to contact us.  We would love to show you the multitude of services we have to offer. We look forward to making your life easier.

With Best Professional Regards,

Geoffrey S. Thomas, J.D.

"We Are Technology"

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Capturing & Memorializing Text Messages and Photos for Discovery

Capturing & Memorializing Text Messages and Photos for Discovery

According to Experian Marketing Services, in 2013, cell phone owners between the ages of 18 and 24 exchanged an average of 128 text messages per day and 3,853 per month.  Although this is only a small segment of the population, these statistics are evidence that society is changing the way it communicates with each other.   For law firms, this trend is significant and should be considered when thinking about potentially relevant evidence.

MEMORIALIZING TEXT MESSAGES FOR DISCOVERY

Whether an attorney practices family law or criminal defense, they are most likely seeing a spike in the number of cases using evidence from text messages.  As a result, attorneys are having to work with clients and witnesses to memorialize these text messages for discovery.  For some, this can prove challenging.  From navigating various technologies and devices to keeping the law firm out of the retrieval process, there are instances where relying on a third party for memorializing text messages might make sense.  At Thomas & Thomas, we can gather text messages from various cell phone manufacturers (Apple, Android, etc.) and export them into a viewer-friendly format for easy review and dissemination.  We also create an affidavit attesting to the method and completeness of the materialization process.

OBTAINING METADATA FROM DIGITAL PHOTOS

Digital cameras embed technical metadata called Exchangeable Image File Format ("EXIF") data into the image files they create.  Some of those common data fields can include the make and model of the camera, the date and time the image was captured, and the geographical location where the image was taken.  Obviously, this information might prove useful in a case and should be considered by law firms when determining what evidence has value. 

Not sure what EXIF data your photos have?  Thomas & Thomas will run an analysis on your photos and provide you with a breakdown of said information.  As with text messages, Thomas & Thomas will include an affidavit attesting to its method and completeness.

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