Jury Instructions

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The Raise-Or-Waive Rule: A Trap For Trial And Appellate Counsel

The raise-or-waive rule, arguably one of the most important rules of appellate practice, also is one of the Rhode Island Supreme Court’s most frequently invoked legal doctrines. In its last term, the Rhode Island Supreme...more

Expert Tip: Use Jury Instructions in Your Opening and Closing

By the time you prepare your opening statement, you’ll know specifically what the legal theories of your case are and generally what the jury instructions will be. By the time of your closing argument, the instructions will...more

Entertainment and Media Litigation Update - October 2015

The "Dancing Baby" Case—Ninth Circuit Rules That "Fair Use" Must First Be Considered Before Sending Takedown Notices Under the DMCA - Why it matters: On September 14, 2015, the Ninth Circuit ruled in Lenz v. Universal...more

4 Ways Not to Preserve Objections to Jury Instructions

The trouble began with an off-the-record charge conference. Both sides proposed standard breach of contract jury instructions, but the defendant added additional language. The trial court gave the defendant’s version. The...more

California Federal Courts Reiterate: Unless Computer Hacked, Computer Fraud and Abuse Act Permits Misuse Of Electronic Information

In United States v. Nosal, 676 F.3d 854 (9th Cir. 2012) (en banc), the court held that the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1030, prohibits unlawful access to a computer but not unauthorized use of computerized...more

Standard-essential Patents and the RAND Requirement: Recent Decisions on Reasonable and Nondiscriminatory Royalties

Issues related to standard-essential patents (SEPs) have generated significant attention in the wake of the first appellate decisions on royalties for SEPs – Ericsson, Inc. v. D-Link Systems. 773 F.3d 1201 (Fed. Cir. 2014)...more

Virginia Supreme Court Decides Punitive Damages Case

In the recent case of Cain v. Lee, the Virginia Supreme Court determined that the Circuit Court for the County of Stafford erred when it granted a jury instruction that provided that “punitive damages are generally not...more

Use a Focus Group Before Every Trial

Posted on August 5, 2015 by Julie Brook, Esq. If a full-blown mock trial is out of your budget, then get a focus group together. For the cost of $50 per juror plus pizza, you could spend the most productive and useful evening...more

Appellate Court Notes

Appellate Court Advance Release Opinions - AC36506 - Sidorova v. East Lyme Board of Education - Due to budget cuts, the Board of Education laid off the plaintiff who was a tenured French teacher. She sued for...more

Political Logrolling Approved by Seventh Circuit

It has been a banner season for politically important public corruption rulings. Two weeks ago the Fourth Circuit issued its opinion upholding the conviction of former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell. Now the Seventh Circuit...more

Smartflash v. Apple: After $500M Verdict, District Court Grants New Trial on Damages Based on Improper Use of Entire Market Value...

After a jury returned a verdict against Apple, Apple filed a motion for judgment as a matter of law or a new trial. The district court subsequently notified the parties pursuant to Rule 59(d) that it was considering granting...more

Tuomey’s Appeal of $237M False Claims Act Judgment Denied by the Fourth Circuit

In This Issue: - Background - Tuomey’s Second Appeal to the Fourth Circuit - The Trial Court’s Grant of a New Trial - Tuomey’s Request for Judgement as a Matter of Law on the Stark Law and FCA...more

Virginia Supreme Court Holds That Courts May Not Instruct Juries That Punitive Damages Are Disfavored

The drafting of jury instructions on punitive damages presents unique challenges for defense lawyers. On the one hand, it is generally necessary to ask for an instruction that goes beyond existing law in order to preserve...more

Supreme Court Update: Horne V. Dep't Of Agriculture (14-275), Kimble V. Marvel Entertainment (13-720), Patel V. City Of Los...

Raisins, radioactive wrists, Red Roof registries, and reformatory roughhousing were all on the Court's radar Monday (it's a very broad radar horizon), as it issued decisions in Horne v. Dep't of Agriculture (14-275), holding...more

Supreme Court Update: Mcfadden V. United States (14-378), Ohio V. Clark (13-1352), Brumfield V. Cain (13-1433) And Davis V. Ayala...

We're back with Part II of our last-Thursday round-up, just in time for another decision dump from One First Street. Last week, the Court handed down decisions in Los Angeles v. Patel (13-1175), Kimble v. Marvel Enterprises...more

Kingsley v. Hendrickson: Excessive Force is in the Eye of the Objective Beholder

The Supreme Court of the United States, in Kingsley v. Hendrickson, waded into the metaphysical discussion of what plaintiffs must prove about corrections officers’ state of mind in a lawsuit alleging the officers used...more

Supreme Court Decides Kingsley v. Hendrickson

On June 22, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Kinsgley v. Hendrickson, No. 13-1175, holding that to prove an excessive force claim, a pretrial detainee need show only that an officer’s deliberate use of force was...more

US Supreme Court Ruling Impacts Jail Operations

On June 22, 2015, the United States Supreme Court issued an important decision for all North Carolina counties operating county jails in which individuals are held detainees awaiting trial. In Kingsley v. Hendrickson, No....more

EEOC Victory Reversed for Improper Direct Threat Standard

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently experienced a particularly painful loss, as a former “win” was reversed. In March, the 10th District Court of Appeals ruled that an EEOC victory was erroneous due to...more

Jury Instructions – Avoiding Landmines and Preserving Error

The jury instructions and verdict form are often treated as an afterthought relegated to an associate just before trial when lead counsel is focused on opening statements and presenting evidence. Don’t let this happen. The...more

Client Alert: First Responders May Not Assert Comparative Negligence of Plaintiff for Pre-Accident Conduct

In Harb v. City of Bakersfield (No. F066839, filed 1/23/2015), the California Court of Appeal, Fifth Appellate District, held that where a plaintiff is seeking damages only for aggravation or enhancement of an injury or...more

Court Rules On Jury Instructions Relating To Damages

The court finds defendant’s view of the entire market rule overly narrow and provides a cautionary jury instruction at the time plaintiff’s expert first references its theory of damages, and again as part of final...more

Practical Guidelines for Jury Instructions, Verdict Forms, and the Charge Conference (Part 5 of 5)

You have been asked to prepare a set of jury instructions and a verdict form for trial. What do you do? Where do you start? In my last op-ed, I talked about the potential grounds for reversible error that may arise from the...more

Client Advisory: First Responders' Liability to be Clarified in New Trial Barring Blame of Plaintiff for Prior Contributory...

On January 23, 2015, the Court of Appeal published its opinion in Harb v. City of Bakersfield, et al., a case regarding an incident that occurred almost a decade ago. The opinion clarified how juries can be instructed in...more

Court Rules On Curative Jury Instruction Regarding Damages

Transcenic, Inc. v. Google, Inc., C.A. No. 11-582-LPS, January 12, 2015. Stark, J. Court resolves dispute regarding curative jury instruction relating to damages....more

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