August 01, 2012

iWitness: The iPad for Litigators: Storming the Courtrooms

Litigators are eagerly embracing the iPad. Here are the tablets pluses and minuses, along with a review of some of the better apps.

Sharon D. Nelson and John W. Simek

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Only rarely do you see a new technology storm the courtroom, but the eagerness with which litigators are embracing the iPad is extraordinary. As we write this, we have just returned from giving a continuing legal education (CLE) program at which a litigator proudly held up his new iPad and pronounced: “This is a game changer.” If you are not yet a believer, consider this: When we helped organize a webinar sponsored by the America Law Institute and the American Bar Association and called (cleverly) “The iPad for Litigators,” so many lawyers registered (nearly 1,000) that we had to break it into three sessions so as not to overload the technology. The CLE made so much money that its sponsor, the ABA’s Law Practice Management Section, quadrupled its anticipated yearly income. When we taught a similar CLE in Fairfax Circuit Court, we maxed out the space in our largest courtroom. We now have four more such CLEs scheduled.

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