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Chuck Clay's Guide to Forming and Working with a Cohesive Trial Team

Recently, Attorney Chuck Clay wrote an article titled, “Applying Justice on the Road: Cranes, Planes and Trial Boots.” Using his personal experience and lessons learned, Attorney Clay explains how it can be advantageous for attorneys to form cohesive trial teams with various co-counsel members that reside and practice in different states.

To begin, Attorney Clay explains the importance of selecting and getting to know your co-counsel on an intrinsic level. He states that attorneys searching for a co-counsel should perform the following tasks in order to create a functional and successful team:

  • Solicit second opinions for others
  • Meet with prospective co-counsel and staff in person
  • Visit potential co-counsel members’ offices

He continues by explaining that a co-counsel does not have to be a direct reflection of a particular attorney’s work ethics, views, and processes, and that synergy should be natural as well as the ultimate goal. He explains how in his personal experience, together, each member’s unique styles, both aesthetically and professionally, reaped diversity rather than diversion.

Moreover, Attorney Clay also touches on how collaboration can be achieved in a cost-effective manner. While some trips may be necessary, many discussions and strategies can be planned and handled in different locations while still achieving the appropriate results. This can be done without overspending. When this process is handled correctly, each member of the co-counsel can learn each other’s styles, preferences, and weaknesses, and utilize those various tools to form a stronger case as a whole.

Attorney Clay also notes the importance of learning about a judge’s particular style before entering the courtroom, the need to secure comfortable and functional accommodations to lessen stress levels during the trial, and the significance of using proper manners and polite etiquette inside and outside of the courtroom. Most importantly, Attorney Clay explains that no attorney should ever turn down an exceptional case merely because of location.

To read Attorney Clay’s full article, click here.