This is the second part of a post that began earlier this week with "The Use of Demonstrative Evidence in Civil Cases: A Brief History."
In modern trials, lawyers often incorporate demonstrative evidence into all parts of their cases. From David Ball on Damages comes an example of the way a plaintiff's lawyer might use such evidence during a life-care planner's testimony:
Show-and-tell. Turn your life-care planner's testimony into a magnificent show-and-tell. Have her bring things to court--the leg braces, the special dinnerware, the Velcro fasteners for clothing, the urinary catheter, etc. Pass these things around the jury.
Have your life-care planner teach the jury what these things are for, specifically how they are used, and what makes them work. Have her show videos of the kinds of therapy in her plan. Show a blow-up photo of the rehabilitation center.
Make everY important item memorable. Do that not with words but with the objects themselves (pass them around), with pictures, with videos, with tactile demonstrations. . . .
Words are never enough. Neither are tiny pictures from a medical supply catalog. Minimum life-care planners who do their jobs right probably need to drive large vans to haul all the stuff.
You get the idea. These paragraphs are directly descended from the views of Melvin Belli that I quoted in the first part of this post, and apply to counsel for plaintiffs as well as defendants. As David Ball says, when it comes to persuasion at trial, "Words are never enough."