Written by Elizabeth Miller, Head of eCourts, Law In Order.
“The market no longer tolerates mediocrity,” according to recent findings from the 2015 Australia: State of the Legal Market report issued by Melbourne Law School and Thomson Reuters PeerMonitor.
Clients are beginning to seek out lawyers who understand how technology can directly benefit them. By collaborating with high-technology experts, lawyers can offer their clients customised solutions that reflect an understanding of their unique needs. Embracing technology is a clear advantage for clients and taxpayers alike.
Customise the courtroom experience for your client.
What works best for one client and setting (i.e. courtroom, arbitration, inquiry) does not necessarily work well for another. The type of evidence involved in a case should influence what options you present to your client.
In many technology-enabled courtrooms, images can be projected on screen by an LCD projector, but the capabilities of such devices are limited without the use of advanced evidence management software or a skilled operator. When combined, the use of such technology and a trained evidence presenter accelerates proceedings and enables robust functionality.
Annotation of evidence
Having witnesses and counsel mark exhibits with notations, or zoom in on specific areas of evidence to highlight facts while on the stand, can be a powerful tool. For example, markings can show where a crucial event occurred on a particular piece of evidence, including live video. Once the notations are made on the monitor, additional markings could be added to identify the witness responsible for the notations, all of which can be preserved electronically or by printing a copy of the exhibit.
During the Grantham Flood Commission of Inquiry in 2015, 90 per cent of the trial evidence contained maps and video records. The temporary hearing room was turned into a cinema to reflect the type of the evidence shown during the proceedings.
The art of an eTrial
Law In Order hosts regular CPD seminars on the basics and finer points of eTrials. Each seminar provides a diverse range of perspectives on issues such as:
- When is an eTrial appropriate?
- Practical tips on the implementation of eTrials
- The pitfalls of eTrials
- The future of eTrials