Two Voir Dire Tips - and a Worksheet
Formalizing your thought process improves your preparation of voir dire
questions. We provide trial lawyers with a complimentary
worksheet. Written by a top lawyer, this worksheet improves your voir dire questions,
by formalizing your preparation process.
Here are some ideas for you. (Link to the worksheet follows these tips.)
Tip #1. Prepare some "Start a
Always, when you prepare your voir dire, think of a half dozen
or dozen sentences or phrases which will get a discussion started with jurors. An example is
Some people believe....[e.g., most corporations are wrong all
the time] , but others believe .....[e.g., corporations are made up of
people who make reasonable decisions most of the time.] ....Which way do you lean on
that? [ Follow up with A Why
do you incline that way?@ or
A Tell me more about that?]
Tip#2. Use "Looping Questions."
Looping questions get the jurors to talk about
their real beliefs. Looping questions are those that occur when after you get an
answer from one juror, then use that answer in a question to another juror, like
the following example of a series of three looping questions. Notice the
variations [italicized in the example]. Memorize some variations of "what
do you think about..." so they come automatically to you while you are standing
in front of the prospective jurors.
Mr. Johnson says that there are too many lawsuits;
Mrs. Lopez, what
do you think about that?
Mr. Blackstone, how do you feel about what Mrs.
Lopez just said -- that
there aren't enough of some
kinds of lawsuits, but too many of some kinds of lawsuits?
Mr. Blackstone, I am glad you said what you did, because it=
s one of those things people don=
t like to talk about too much in front of strangers. Who else feels like
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worksheet, at no cost,
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