Civil Interviewing and Investigating for Paralegals

Civil Interviewing and Investigating for Paralegals : A Process-oriented Approach

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For undergraduate pre-law courses and paralegal courses. Synthesizing the theoretical with the practical, this text presents topic coverage in the same order as problems are encountered in the real world. Assuming knowledge of core areas of law, and civil litigation, the textbook walks the student through the steps of the trial process, outlining the practical steps, and introducing the evidentiary concepts that accompany each item that must be investigated as they unfold. The text is written in a conversational tone, more like a college audience magazine than a typical textbook, to engage the reader in the more

Product details

  • Paperback | 576 pages
  • 203.2 x 251.5 x 22.9mm | 1,043.27g
  • Pearson Education (US)
  • Prentice Hall
  • Upper Saddle River, United States
  • English
  • 0131118919
  • 9780131118911

Table of contents

(NOTE: Each chapter concludes withChapter Summary, For further reading: Chapter Review,Vocabulary List, Fill in the Blanks, Web Work, Working the Brain, and Putting it to Work). 1. The Law Office Environment. Introduction Law Office Categories By Size Sole Practitioner Small Firm Medium-Sized Firm Large firms By Practice Personal Injury (PI) Law Consumer Protection Commercial Litigation Family Law Probate Law Criminal Law Non-traditional Employment The Role of the Paralegal Other Support Staff Ethical Issues Evidentiary Issues Getting Organized Filing Timetables/Calendaring Running Tallies: Costs, Damages, Billing 2. The Client: Plaintiff's Perspective. Ethical Issues UPL Conflict of Interest Ethical or Chinese Wall Evidentiary Issues Attorney Client Privilege Attorney Work Product An Initial Client Call The Initial Interview Objectives Preparation Manner Techniques Content Releases Contingency Fee Contracts Hourly Billing and Retainers Wrapping it up Client Evaluation Investigation Plan Finding Potential Defendants Demand letter or Complaint Client Contact Background Checks Finding Potential Defendants 3. The Client: Defendant's Perspective. Introduction Ethical Issues Dual Representation Evidentiary Issues Rule 403 Hearsay Party-Opponent Admissions The Initial Interview Emotional Baggage and Venting Nonverbal communication Using the Complaint The Paperwork Follow-up 4. The Opposing Party. Introduction Ethical Issues No Contact Rule Representation of Corporations Evidentiary Issues Character Evidence Propensity Evidence Habit Evidence Informal Investigation Surveillance Discovery Discovery for Parties Only Depositions: Discovery for Everybody Foreign Opposing Parties Working with Opposing Counsel and Staff 5. Fact Witnesses. Introduction Ethical Issues Disclosure Tape Recording Evidentiary Issues Privileges Exceptions to Privileges Finding Witnesses The Courthouse The DMV The Internet The United StatesPostal Service (USPS) Paying for Help Interviews Practical Considerations What to Tell What to Ask How to Ask The Witness Who Knows Nothing Witness Statements Witness Summaries Cost Considerations 6. Special Issues with Witnesses. Introduction Ethical Issues Client wishes and the incompetent clien Evidentiary Issues Witness Competency Children Elderly Clients or Witnesses Disabled or Impaired Clients or Witnesses Hearing impairments Vision Impairment Mobility impairment General issues Language Barriers Cultural Barriers & Racism 7. Documentary Evidence Introduction Ethical Issues Rambo litigators Evidentiary Issues Business Records Exception Authentication Informal Methods Releases and other requests FOIA Formal Methods Request for Production Depositions Deposition by Written Questions Calling Witness at Trial Automobile Accident Report Medical Records 8. Documentary Evidence, cont.: Edocuments and other Computer Discovery Issues. Metadata Email Cost Issues Protective Orders and Spoliation Death Penalty Sanctions 9. Background Resources. Ethical Issues Evidentiary Issues Sources Government Sources Government Sources: FOIA Reading Rooms Market Reports and Other Commercial Publications Reference Books and other Learned Treatises 10. Expert Witnesses. Ethical Issues Evidentiary Issues Finding Experts Evaluating Experts Cost Considerations Use of Experts Purely Consulting Consulting/Testifying In-House Experts Discovery and Opposing Experts 11. Real and Demonstrative Evidence Real Evidence Demonstrative evidence Ethical Issues Evidentiary Issues Obtaining and Authenticating Physical Evidence Preservation, Inspection, Testing, and Spoliation Issues What, When, and How of Demonstrative Evidence Charts and Timelines Documents Photographs and videotapes Computer Animation 12. Witness Preparation. Ethical Issues Evidentiary Issues Preparing Witnesses to Testify Jury Consultants General Stress Reduction Techniques 13. Ending the Litigation. Ethical issues Evidentiary Issues Parties with Interest in the Outcome Physical or Mental Health Care Lienholders Mechanics/Materialmen Taxing Entities Settlement Presentations Mediation Presentations Trial Preparation Trial notebook Jury selection Introduction of Evidence Post trial jury canvassingshow more