Module # 2 Lecture Structure of a Civil Trial
Parts of a Civil Trial <ul><li>Commencement of the law suit </li></ul><ul><li>Motions  </li></ul><ul><li>Voir Dire </li></...
Parts of a Civil Trial (con’t) <ul><li>Plaintiff’s Rebuttal </li></ul><ul><li>Jury Instructions </li></ul><ul><li>Closing ...
 
Hypothetical Case <ul><li>Paul sues Dan for a traffic accident </li></ul><ul><li>Alleges Dan ran through a STOP Sign. </li...
Commencement of the Law Suit <ul><li>Pleadings: COMPLAINT w/ SUMMONS & ANSWER </li></ul><ul><li>COMPLAINT:  In Federal and...
Commencement of the Law Suit <ul><li>Defendant(s) files an ANSWER </li></ul><ul><li>Defendant will respond to the Complain...
Motions <ul><li>CR 12(b)(6) </li></ul><ul><li>Summary Judgment </li></ul><ul><li>Motions in Limine  (MIL) </li></ul>
CR 12(b)(6) <ul><li>“ [ F]ailure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted .” </li></ul><ul><li>The Moving party –...
Summary Judgment <ul><li>A motion submitted by either party “ show[ing] that there is no genuine issue as to any material ...
Motions in Limine  <ul><li>The purpose of a  Motion in Limine  is to either prevent evidence from being admitted at trial ...
Voir Dire <ul><li>Jury Selection </li></ul><ul><li>Counsel for each party asks questions of the  venire  (jury panel) to d...
Voir Dire <ul><li>Peremptory Challenges </li></ul><ul><li>Excusing a juror from something other than cause. </li></ul><ul>...
Voir Dire  <ul><li>Batson  Challenge; in re Peremptory Challenges </li></ul><ul><li>Litigant must be part of a “cognizable...
Opening Statements <ul><li>Plaintiff goes first </li></ul><ul><li>Followed by the Defense </li></ul><ul><li>Opening statem...
Plaintiff’s Case-in-Chief <ul><li>Calling of witnesses </li></ul><ul><li>Admission of Evidence </li></ul><ul><li>Direct Ex...
Plaintiff’s Case-in-Chief <ul><li>Plaintiff will rest once all witnesses/evidence has been admitted. </li></ul><ul><li>Eit...
Defendant’s Case-in-Chief <ul><li>Proceeds in a similar manner as the Plaintiff’s Case-in-Chief. </li></ul><ul><li>Defenda...
Plaintiff’s Rebuttal  <ul><li>At the end of the Defendant’s Case, the Plaintiff may introduce Rebuttal Evidence/Witnesses,...
Jury Instructions <ul><li>Parties submit sample Jury Instructions to the Judge on how the Jury should be instructed. </li>...
Closing Statements <ul><li>Parties argue the facts of the case in relation to the Jury instructions to make their case. </...
Jury Deliberations <ul><li>Jury considers only the facts established at trial </li></ul><ul><li>Analyzes those facts again...
Judgment <ul><li>Once the Jury has rendered its Verdict, the Judge will review it. Pass Judgment. </li></ul><ul><li>Judges...
Review <ul><li>The Trial System is the backbone of the American Justice System and this Course </li></ul><ul><li>Trials ar...
Review <ul><li>Pre-Trial: Filing of the Complaint and Motions Practice </li></ul><ul><ul><li>In reality most cases are set...
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Module # 2 Civil Trial

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Module # 2 Civil Trial

  1. 1. Module # 2 Lecture Structure of a Civil Trial
  2. 2. Parts of a Civil Trial <ul><li>Commencement of the law suit </li></ul><ul><li>Motions </li></ul><ul><li>Voir Dire </li></ul><ul><li>Opening Statements </li></ul><ul><li>Plaintiff’s Case in Chief </li></ul><ul><li>Defendant’s Case in Chief </li></ul>
  3. 3. Parts of a Civil Trial (con’t) <ul><li>Plaintiff’s Rebuttal </li></ul><ul><li>Jury Instructions </li></ul><ul><li>Closing Statements </li></ul><ul><li>Jury Deliberation </li></ul><ul><li>Jury Verdict </li></ul><ul><li>Judgment by the Court </li></ul>
  4. 5. Hypothetical Case <ul><li>Paul sues Dan for a traffic accident </li></ul><ul><li>Alleges Dan ran through a STOP Sign. </li></ul><ul><li>Negligence Theory: Duty, Breach, Causation, Damages </li></ul>
  5. 6. Commencement of the Law Suit <ul><li>Pleadings: COMPLAINT w/ SUMMONS & ANSWER </li></ul><ul><li>COMPLAINT: In Federal and Washington: NOTICE pleading : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief .” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Defendant must be made aware of why they are being sued </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Filed with the Court Clerk </li></ul><ul><li>Complaint must be “served” on defendant within 90 days of filing with the Clerk </li></ul>
  6. 7. Commencement of the Law Suit <ul><li>Defendant(s) files an ANSWER </li></ul><ul><li>Defendant will respond to the Complaint by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Admitting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Denying </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Denying for lack of knowledge </li></ul></ul><ul><li>May raise “defenses” to the Complaint </li></ul><ul><li>Make a motion under CR 12(b)(6); see Motions Section. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>CR = Court Rule </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Defendant may also bring claims against the Plaintiff </li></ul><ul><li>Must respond within 60 days of receiving the Complaint </li></ul>
  7. 8. Motions <ul><li>CR 12(b)(6) </li></ul><ul><li>Summary Judgment </li></ul><ul><li>Motions in Limine (MIL) </li></ul>
  8. 9. CR 12(b)(6) <ul><li>“ [ F]ailure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted .” </li></ul><ul><li>The Moving party – the Defendant(s)– is stating that there is no reason for a complaint as nothing is wrong. </li></ul><ul><li>Successful only if “ it appears beyond doubt that the plaintiff can prove no set of facts, consistent with the complaint, which would entitle the plaintiff to relief .“  </li></ul><ul><li>Must be filed in the Answer or it is “waived.” </li></ul>
  9. 10. Summary Judgment <ul><li>A motion submitted by either party “ show[ing] that there is no genuine issue as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law .” CR 56(c). </li></ul><ul><li>The judge weighs all evidence in “ the light most favorable to the non-moving party .” </li></ul><ul><li>Filed by either Party after all the “Pleadings” have been served. </li></ul><ul><li>This a means to dispose of the case prior to trial. </li></ul>
  10. 11. Motions in Limine <ul><li>The purpose of a Motion in Limine is to either prevent evidence from being admitted at trial or ensuring evidence is admitted at trial. </li></ul><ul><li>I.e. preventing “Subsequent Remedial Measures” from being introduced at trial in a Negligence Claim. ER 407 (ER = Evidence Rule). </li></ul><ul><li>Argued before the Judge at a “Motions Hearing” prior to the beginning of the Trial. </li></ul>
  11. 12. Voir Dire <ul><li>Jury Selection </li></ul><ul><li>Counsel for each party asks questions of the venire (jury panel) to determine: Bias, Interest, Prejudice, or Inability to Serve as a Juror. </li></ul><ul><li>Called a “Challenge for Cause.” </li></ul><ul><li>Unlimited Challenges for Cause. </li></ul>
  12. 13. Voir Dire <ul><li>Peremptory Challenges </li></ul><ul><li>Excusing a juror from something other than cause. </li></ul><ul><li>Usually limited (i.e. 3) depending on the case. </li></ul><ul><li>Peremptory Challenges can not be based on Race or Gender. Batson v. Kentucky , 476 U.S. 79 (1986) (Race) and J. E. B. v. Alabama, 511 U.S. 127 (1994) (Gender) </li></ul>
  13. 14. Voir Dire <ul><li>Batson Challenge; in re Peremptory Challenges </li></ul><ul><li>Litigant must be part of a “cognizable” racial/gender group. </li></ul><ul><li>Assertion made that opposing party is using peremptory challenges in a discriminatory manner. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Must establish a “ prima facie case .” Evidence sufficient to prove more likely than not that a party is acting in a discriminatory manner. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Opposing party has opportunity to provide a “race/gender neutral” reason. </li></ul><ul><li>Judge makes determination on the record as to whether challenge was made on neutral factors. </li></ul>
  14. 15. Opening Statements <ul><li>Plaintiff goes first </li></ul><ul><li>Followed by the Defense </li></ul><ul><li>Opening statements are not “argument.” Cannot talk about law only facts of the case. </li></ul><ul><li>Parties will tell the jury what evidence is “likely” to be presented. </li></ul><ul><li>Establishes a Party’s “Case Theory.” </li></ul>
  15. 16. Plaintiff’s Case-in-Chief <ul><li>Calling of witnesses </li></ul><ul><li>Admission of Evidence </li></ul><ul><li>Direct Examination </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Plaintiff may ask only “open-ended questions.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Cross-examination </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Defense may ask “leading questions.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Plaintiff may re-direct </li></ul>
  16. 17. Plaintiff’s Case-in-Chief <ul><li>Plaintiff will rest once all witnesses/evidence has been admitted. </li></ul><ul><li>Either Party of Both may then move for Summary Judgment </li></ul><ul><li>Judge may Order or Deny a motion for Summary Judgment. </li></ul><ul><li>If Ordered the case is over and the moving party wins. </li></ul><ul><li>Usually, Summary Judgments motions are Denied during trial. </li></ul>
  17. 18. Defendant’s Case-in-Chief <ul><li>Proceeds in a similar manner as the Plaintiff’s Case-in-Chief. </li></ul><ul><li>Defendant asks Opened Ended questions on Direct Examination </li></ul><ul><li>Plaintiff asks leading questions on Cross Examination </li></ul><ul><li>Once Defendant rests, parties can again move for Summary Judgment. </li></ul>
  18. 19. Plaintiff’s Rebuttal <ul><li>At the end of the Defendant’s Case, the Plaintiff may introduce Rebuttal Evidence/Witnesses, challenging the Defendant’s case. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>This is allowed because the Plaintiff has the “burden” of establishing their case; thus extra time to “make” their case. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Proceeds in the same manner as the Plaintiff’s Case-in-Chief. </li></ul><ul><li>Plaintiff then rests. </li></ul>
  19. 20. Jury Instructions <ul><li>Parties submit sample Jury Instructions to the Judge on how the Jury should be instructed. </li></ul><ul><li>Instructions involve such things as the relevant law and the burden of proof. </li></ul><ul><li>Judge determines which Instructions to use and them Instructs the jury. </li></ul>
  20. 21. Closing Statements <ul><li>Parties argue the facts of the case in relation to the Jury instructions to make their case. </li></ul><ul><li>Plaintiff goes first. </li></ul><ul><li>Defense responds </li></ul><ul><li>Plaintiff give a rebuttal closing. </li></ul><ul><li>After instructions the Jury is dismissed to deliberate. </li></ul>
  21. 22. Jury Deliberations <ul><li>Jury considers only the facts established at trial </li></ul><ul><li>Analyzes those facts against law provided in the Instructions. </li></ul><ul><li>Depending on the jurisdiction a Verdict need not be “Unanimous.” Can be 10-2 or in some jurisdictions 9-3. </li></ul><ul><li>If jury finds the Defendant “Liable” the “Damages” are awarded, based on the Defendant’s fault. </li></ul>
  22. 23. Judgment <ul><li>Once the Jury has rendered its Verdict, the Judge will review it. Pass Judgment. </li></ul><ul><li>Judges rarely over-turn a Jury’s Verdict. </li></ul><ul><li>In a Civil Case, if the Plaintiff wins, Damages are awarded. </li></ul><ul><li>Losing party has a right to appeal. </li></ul>
  23. 24. Review <ul><li>The Trial System is the backbone of the American Justice System and this Course </li></ul><ul><li>Trials are set up to ensure fairness to all parties </li></ul><ul><li>All 12 parts of a Trial are important </li></ul>
  24. 25. Review <ul><li>Pre-Trial: Filing of the Complaint and Motions Practice </li></ul><ul><ul><li>In reality most cases are settled prior to trial through a Negotiated Settlement. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>This is the MOST IMPORTANT part of any trial, because this is where the Parties can ensure problematic evidence is not admitted </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Trial: Voir Dire, Opening, Cases in Chief, Jury Instructions, Closing, Jury Deliberation, and Verdict. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Challenges: for CAUSE and PEREMPTORY </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Case Theory: Frames the case from a Party’s perspective </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Case-in-Chief: Witnesses & Evidence </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Closing: ties facts admitted at trial to relevant law </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Verdict: Jury’s Decision </li></ul></ul>
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