July 17, 2019 Articles

Preparing the Corporate Client for Trial

From the law’s perspective, a corporation is a “person” just like an individual. But in preparing for trial, there are important distinctions between the two.

by Clifton L. Brinson

There are important distinctions between preparing a corporation and an individual for trial. This article provides an overview of some of the special considerations to consider when preparing to represent a corporation at trial.

Selecting a Corporate Representative
When representing a corporation, unlike representing an individual, you have some discretion in deciding who sits next to you at counsel’s table. Use that discretion wisely.

The initial trial preparation issue is identifying the right corporate representative. This should be done well in advance of trial. The corporate representative will be the primary human face of the corporation at trial. That representative should be someone likable and, ideally, someone from the jurisdiction where the trial is taking place. You need not choose the general counsel or lead decision maker for the client; that person can be elsewhere in the courtroom if necessary. The corporate representative should, however, be someone who is testifying at some point in the case.

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