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Should Your Attorney Entertain the Jury During Your Trial?

Imagine if your lawyer gave his opening argument by singing! 
Imagine if your lawyer started dancing when told he can question the next witness.
Imagine if your lawyer showed up to court wearing a top hat and tuxedo with a walking cane.

That would be a sight.
That would be dramatic.
That would be bizarre.

That would be interesting.
It would be different.
It would be unusual too.

"It's the singing and dancing lawyer!" reads the headline in the legal journal.

Should your lawyer tell jokes?
Should he tell entertaining stories?
Should he amuse the jury?

Imagine if during jury selection your lawyer told the potential jurors that this trial will be nothing like what they see on TV or in the movies. It won't be exciting. It won't be dramatic. It will be boring. It will be slow.

How many jurors do you think will willingly want to serve jury duty? Not many after that description.

Jurors come into court with the expectation that when they watch a trial, they're going to see some excitement.

They're going to observe legal fighting. 
They want to see legal drama.
They want to see righteous indignation.

They want to see a cross examination that exposes the liar.
They want to see some yelling. Some crying. Some witness quivering in the witness chair like a blob of jello.
That would be exciting.

These jurors have expectations of what they will see and observe if they are selected as jurors in your case.

Are you going to disappoint them?
Well, let's look at the question I raised in the headline...

Should an attorney be entertaining during your trial?

In my opinion, the answer is definitely yes.
Now, don't get me wrong.
I don't mean he should sing and dance at trial.

I don't mean he should tell jokes or stories.
I don't mean he should give soliloquies either.

Well then, what do you mean?

I mean your attorney should be engaging.
I mean your attorney should be enthusiastic.
He should modulate his voice.

He should use his hands dramatically.
He should express himself in a loud and assertive voice.
He should use interesting demonstrative evidence.

Those things will keep a juror's attention.
He should have a total command of the records and where they're located.
Nothing is worse than observing a lawyer fumbling around his papers and files trying to find a document where he looks absent-minded.

Nothing is worse than listening to an attorney ask questions in a monotone.
An attorney has to project his authority and assertiveness.
He has to believe in his case.

That's what I mean by entertaining.
He can show righteous indignation during cross examination, but not continuously. 
He can show his disbelief by overacting...respectfully.

He can do something that's unexpected and out of the ordinary.
This will keep the jury on their toes wondering what's coming next.
This will keep the jury interested.

Doing this will allow the jury to have their expectations met and understood.
All because your lawyer was not stogdy and boring.
All because your lawyer was creative.

All because your lawyer understood what jurors want and expect.

Should your lawyer be entertaining during trial?
The answer is definitely yes!

To learn more about entertaining lawyers, I invite you to watch the quick video below...


Gerry Oginski
NY Medical Malpractice & Personal Injury Trial Lawyer