Your trial tech is certainly using Trial Presentation software like Trial Director or OnCue. Here’s a list of OTHER software that occasionally are required or helpful to present evidence in court or is useful to be efficient in managing common courtroom tasks.
For our full checklist of assessing your trial needs, download the printable pdf here.
b. Other Software Skills needed
Most exhibits or demonstratives should already be in mpeg, pdf, jpg or tiff formats, and can be handled by your trial presentation software, but often you may have other file types that you will need to present [or arrive from opposing counsel or even your own experts at the last minute]. Your trial person should be expert at this software . If so your trial person will need to be very familiar with the advanced functions of the program for maximum speed in the war-room or courtroom and most importantly so everything looks smooth and professional to the judge and jury.
- Adobe Acrobat -You may get a huge oversized pdf that needs to be downsized for fast presentation. Or maybe you have OCR’d all your pdf documents and need to search for some specific text across thousands of pages. Maybe you want to make sure you have stripped all the annotations, markeups or metadata from a PDF or other file. Maybe you want to quickly redact or change Trial exhibit numbers or create a new exhibit on the fly?
- PowerPoint – Do you want to jump to various slides in an opening/closing or expert presentation? Do you want to embed a video or depo clip at the last minute or make changes based on opposing counsel objections? Do you have a complex animation created by a 3rd party or associate and need to modify a label buried in a slide?
- Excel – Is it court ready? Do you need to zoom into a specific cell or hide a series of columns or rows to make presentation more effective? Do you need to literally create a running checklist and totals in front of the jury of expenses or values based on expert or witness testimony.
- Video Editing software – Need to modify a clip at the last minute in court or the war-room the night before. Do you need a title slide added or an exhibit # added to the start of the clip? Do you need to print out a hi-res screenshot of a specific frame. Do you need to go to slow-motion mode to truly help the jury understand what happened?
- Deposition Software. Audio/Video out of sync? Need a last minute change to a deposition file? No load file provided by your team? TimecoderPro does the trick, but you’ll need to set it up in advance with iPro to save changes.
- Word – Is there complex formatting that needs to be modified during trial or a custom header added to a document before printing?
- Exhibit stamping [batch 100+ docs/1000 pages+] – Do you have 100+ exhibits that need trial exhibit # added automatically on every page. Is there a specific sticker the federal court mandates is on every page.
- Other Software – Maybe you have some proprietary MRI or other film files that need to be presented in court? Custom 3D modelling files that an expert needs to demonstrate a product?
Many of these software proficiencies may not be needed at all, so focus on the core competencies: typically, 80-90% of a trial tech’s time in court will be spent on pulling up pdf exhibits fast, zooming in, and highlighting key phrases or excerpts. However, it’s invariably that problem that only comes up one time in every trial [system crash, cable malfunction, excel spreadsheet exhibit, extra depo clip, last minute exhibit etc.] that really tests the tech in front of the judge and jury. Hopefully this is a starting point for a more detailed discussion and assessment of your in-house and outsourced needs.
Check out our other blogs for some more assessment questions prior to trial.
For our full checklist, download the printable pdf here. Use this to better assess your in-house resources or use as backup to justify the benefits of outsourcing.
Got questions? Contact us here 24/7/365.