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There are a variety of ways to make an opening statement. I’d like to share one example. This example only relates to the damages in the case. It relies on PowerPoint to illustrate the significant damages in this tragic personal injury case. .

The case involved a 2.5 week long jury trial in Spokane federal court. The liability was disputed and there was a significant contributory negligence issue. The verdict was over $20 million dollars in 2002, which was a record at the time for that venue. The facts involved a man who was working for a company putting up a sign on a billboard raised high over the ground. The long metal pole used to install the sign contacted a high voltage line which ran past the sign. The electrical shock knocked him off the billboard to the ground. The fall and electrical injuries caused internal injuries and resulted in the amputation of both arms at elbow. The injuries were significant enough to require a wheelchair for mobility. The suit also was for his wife and children for their consortium claims.

Here are the slides used in describing the damages to the jury. Today, the quality and style of these slides would be revised, but this is an example for you to review.

About Paul Luvera

Plaintiff trial lawyer for 50 years. Past President of the Inner Circle of Advocates & Washington State Trial Lawyers Association. Member American Board of Trial Advocates, American College of Trial Lawyers, International Academy, International Society of Barristers, member of the National Trial Lawyers Hall of Fame & speaker at Spence Trial College
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