How to Try the Winning Case

Last year’s Academy was filled to maximum capacity.  This coming Academy will be in a new venue (The Woodlands Marriott Waterway Hotel & Convention Center) to enable even more lawyers to attend.  This year will be the most thorough conference yet, with many new additions previously not available to attendees.

Come check out almost 35 years of trial experience that has resulted in almost 20 billion dollars in trial results.  Lanier opens his vault of methods that target winning the case, from the planning stages to the actual execution.  Get his updated check lists.  Learn his latest and greatest tools.  Change the way you try cases.


Several sessions will also cover corresponding ethics issues. 14-17 hours of CLE, including 2.5 hours of ethics, is pending approval in most states.

8:00 AM-12:00 PM     Pre-Conference Registration
(Located in Town Center Foyer)

12:00-5:00 PM     4th Annual Lanier Golf Scramble
(Located at The Woodlands Golf Course)
12:00-1:00 PM    Casual Lunch
1:00 PM     Shot Gun Start

AWARDS GIVEN: “Closest to the Pin” awards-male/female, “Longest Drive” contest-male/female, “Best Dressed” awards-male/female, Prizes for teams 1st, 2nd, and 3rd , “The Duffers Award” for worst team score.

2:30-4:30 PM     4th Annual Lanier Theological Library Tour and Lemonade Social
Shuttle transportation will be provided to and from the Lanier Theological Library leaving from the Marriott conference center entrance at 1:45 PM.

6:00-8:00 PM     Welcome Reception
(Located in Town Center Ballroom)
Golf Scramble Awards will be given at the reception.

7:30-8:30 AM    Registration and Breakfast
(Located in Town Center Foyer and Ballroom)

8:30-9:30 AM   2019 Focus Issue: Psychology of Jury Thinking
(Located in Town Center Ballroom)
Juries make decisions, and we want them to decide in our clients favor.  In this, the MOST IMPORTANT section of the seminar, the presentation will deliver the latest research in how juries learn, remember, and make up their minds.  This will take the latest in marketing, psychology, neuroscience, and other fields of study showing how it changes all we do in trying cases.

9:30-10:15 AM     Juror Demographics and the Millennial Juror
Social scientists’ research has determined that certain Americans have certain traits depending upon when they grew up. The relevant traits to trial lawyers are those that explain how people process information, how they are motivated, how they think, and what they expect. Those generational cohorts that comprise our jurors will be explored in relevant detail. Special focus will center on the latest research about “Millennials.” 75 million Americans fall into the “Millennial” category. Born between 1980 and 2000, this generational cohort is beginning to shop up in droves on your jury. The social scientists tell us that the Millennials differ widely from earlier generations, both in what they value, how they process information, how they are motivated and how they communicate. What do we know about millennials and how do we reach them? How do we try cases to this largest generation currently in America?

10:15-10:30 AM    BREAK

10:30-11:00 AM     Juror Demographics and the Millennial Juror (Continued) 

11:00-11:30 AM  Resource Checklist
A discussion of resources that give greater insight and depth to trying cases. This section will highlight Lanier’s go-to resources for practical legal help, life help, understanding communicating to and motivating others, tapping into jurors’ mental processes and memory, and more.

11:30 AM – 12:00 PM   Pre-trial Checklist 

12:00-1:15 PM    LUNCH & Optional Session on Powerpoint Construction
(Located in The Waterway Ballroom-2nd Floor)
This session will have a box lunch as Mark explains the nuts and bolts of how to construct a winning Powerpoint. Bring a computer with Powerpoint already loaded, and Mark will take you from zero to 60 in two short hours spread over two days. This session will break down in simple, easy to follow steps, how to make an effective Powerpoint. This is the most practical, perhaps single, game-changing session of the Academy 4.0.

1:15-2:15 PM    Voir Dire, Jury Selection and Ethics of Jury Research (including 30 minutes of ethics)
This session will include an outline useful for voir dire in every case, from auto collisions to complicated RICO commercial matters. How do we assess potential jurors? What factors are important, and how do we know that? How is voir dire structured? How do we handle problems in the case in voir dire? How do we handle the problem juror? When do we use questionnaires and which form do we use? What if the judge conducts the voir dire? Social media has opened Pandora’s box of ethical concerns. When and how should we regulate our client’s use of social media navigating the treacherous ethical waters? When do we need to engage unethical parties or lawyers that aren’t abiding by the rules?

2:15-2:45 PM  Opening (including 30 minutes of ethics)
Several openings will be provided to give models from which any lawyer can build a successful opening. How is an opening “written”? What is the checklist of things to include? Why is opening important and what are the specific goals of opening? What equipment is needed for the best opening? How do we best learn the tools of opening? Why is an ethical opening the best opening? Explanation of the “Snapchat” opening specifically targeting Millennials, but also very effective for older generations. This will include specific resources, model openings, and checklists for optimal content.

2:45-3:00 PM     BREAK

3:00-3:30 PM    Opening (Continued)

3:30-5:00 PM     Direct Examination (including 30 minutes of ethics)
This section concerns the witnesses on your side. Topics include: How do you prepare and conduct a direct examination? Learn the subtle ways to set your opponents up for a fruitless cross-examination. Take the sting out of impeachment before it happens. See the effective utilization of the Elmo for a direct that will fuel your closing and the jury’s verdict. Ordering ideas for putting on your case in chief while pre-empting the effectiveness of the coming defense case. IMPORTANT LESSONS ON RE-DIRECT, an often neglected CRITICAL part of any trial.

5:00-7:00 PM  Roots Roll Out: Tex Mex with the Amazing, Jenny and the Mexicats!
(Located in Town Center Ballroom)

7:30-8:15 AM     Breakfast and Networking
(Located in Town Center Ballroom and Foyer)

8:15-9:15 AM     Neuroscience for Trial Lawyers (Basics of Mental Functioning) (including 30 minutes of ethics)
(Located in Town Center Ballroom)
What has science taught us about how people think, learn, process data and remember? Understanding and using each of these processes is critical if we are going to maximize the power and effectiveness of each stage in trial. This exploration of neuroscience for trial lawyers will give theory as well as practice insights.

9:15-10:15 AM     Trial Nuts and Bolts and Ethical Considerations (including 30 minutes of ethics)
(Located in Town Center Ballroom)
Trial strategies of witness order, themes for trial, counter-themes for trial (something seldom discussed, but most important), basic equipment for the best trial and how to use it. When to play depositions and how (yes, there is a “how”), note-taking, reading the jury, interacting with the court, and out-of-court work schedule.  What role does truth play in the trial?  How can a lawyer be both advocate and truthful?  Does “candor to the tribunal” mean anything?  If so, what?  What is ethical jury research, and where does it cross the line? How do you guard against the unethical lawyer?

10:15-10:30 AM     BREAK

10:30 AM-12:00 PM   Cross-examination (Including 30 minutes of ethics)
Defusing the “Ten Commandments of Cross-Examination.”  So much cross-examination is built on faulty premises, old ideas, and class room contexts, rather than real life jury trials.   What is the winning cross-examination mindset?  How does that translate into the winning cross-examination through preparation and execution?  Learn the “folder method” of cross, with a real demonstration.  Learn the art of “re-cross” and see how it is a distinct practice.  How do you determine what to “save” for re-cross?  How do the rules affect this critical and often over-looked part of the trial?

12:00-1:15 PM     LUNCH & Second Optional Session on Powerpoint Construction
(Located in The Waterway Ballroom-2nd Floor)
This session will have a box lunch as Mark explains the nuts and bolts of how to construct a winning Powerpoint. Bring a computer with Powerpoint already loaded, and Mark will take you from zero to 60 in two short hours spread over two days. This session will break down in simple, easy to follow steps, how to make an effective Powerpoint. This is the most practical, perhaps single, game-changing session of the Academy 4.0.

1:15-3:15 PM    Closing Argument/Summation/Punitives
The latest ideas behind closing argument are presented, including new templates for memorable closings, how to anticipate and defuse the opponents closing argument, how to summarize most persuasively, and how to seize the conduct of the trial to generate the best jury attention and retention. How do you go beyond the basics, and use the closing argument as a set up to entice the opposing lawyer into mistakes you can capitalize on in rebuttal?

3:15-3:30 PM     BREAK

3:30-5:00 PM  Psychological Considerations and Practical Tools for Handling Problem Cases, Issues, and Witnesses with Q&A Session
Once the sessions have ended, the time is ripe to explain the psychology behind many of the sessions with a view toward what works in subtle ways, ways you can influence the jury to see truth through actions as well as words.  This will also be a Q&A session where anyone’s questions aobut what was taught, about handling problem cases and witnesses, and more will be addressed.

Attendee Restrictions

The Lanier Trial Academy is limited to attendees engaged primarily in civil plaintiff representation. It is strictly forbidden for an individual to attend the conference if he/she or any law firm member is associated with or working in any way connected to the defense of any case or case type that may be covered at the conference without express permission from The Lanier Law Firm. Registrants must also confirm that they do not work with or on behalf of any company that seeks reimbursement from plaintiff settlement proceeds for medical, secondary payer, or subrogation liens of any type.

Refund & Cancellation Policy

Registrants who cancel on or before August 28th will receive a full refund.  After August 28th, fees are non-refundable.