ORDER IN THE COURT Pulling Back the Curtain on Trials
s I wrapped up 2019, I spent a lot of time in trial. It was a busy few weeks, but I enjoy the challenge of going to trial and guiding my clients through the experience. Few people know what to expect during a trial beyond what they’ve seen on TV and in movies.
It’s that story and the way I’m able to tell it that will ultimately determine the outcome of the case.
for our clients, as well as prepare them for how we’re going to tell their story. It’s important that we keep our clients from getting too wrapped up in the formality of it all. There’s so much formality in the trial — the judge in their robes, the lawyers at the tables, the court attendant, the podium; it’s all part
For example, most people don’t realize the importance of pretrial motions. Not all of the evidence comes into the trial. The judge’s ruling on evidence can make a huge difference and add value to the case. The jury will only hear about evidence the judge determines is fair and relevant during pretrial. This is why things are constantly moving in a trial. As a lawyer, that’s part of the excitement. It’s difficult to say what’s going to happen because there are so many variables we don’t have any control over. Back when I was a public defender, I could get very caught up in what the arguments were going to be during the trial. Opening statements and rebuttals were my focus. When I started working on personal injury cases, I realized the importance of being able to tell a client’s story. It’s that story and the way I’m able to tell it that will ultimately determine the outcome of the case. Going to trial is scary for a lot of clients. We understand that. Most lawyers would rather settle cases so our clients don’t have to deal with the stress. But when it becomes necessary to go to trial, we have to prepare our clients. This can be difficult for lawyers to do because we go to trial all the time. Fighting for cases in the courtroom is part of our everyday lives, but most people have never set foot in a courtroom before their case. Lawyers need to remember our clients are human. In order to tell their story to the jury, we need to stay in touch with our clients emotionally. When we go to trial, we have to lay out the framework and the legality of the situation
of the formality that sanitizes the court and sucks the emotions out of the experience. While it’s important for juries to make decisions based on facts, it’s also important for the lawyers to bring emotion back into the case. The cases we fight for do have a great deal of emotion underneath. Juries are giving money as compensation for loss as well as pain and suffering — which is another way of saying emotional loss. I don’t want my clients pulled into the sanitized version of events. I want them to help me tell their true story, to bring real emotion into the courtroom so the jury feels it. There are a lot of confusing, intimidating, and overwhelming things about going to trial, but in the end, it really boils down to the client being able to tell their story. That’s why it’s called their day in court. When we do that right, all those formalities don’t seem quite so intimidating anymore.
SCREEN-TIME STRATEGIES How to Set a Family Media Use Plan
about what they put on the internet because anything they upload never really goes away. Teach them to be smart with their decisions. Connect with them on social media if it helps you keep an eye on things.
With 24/7 media exposure from TVs, computers, and smartphones, it feels like life is dominated by screens. Consider implementing a media use plan for your family so they don’t miss out on the real world.
Construct a ‘Media Diet’
Set a Curfew
Take an active role in what your children watch by co-viewing programs with them. You’ll have a better sense of what they’re seeing and can point them toward the programming that’s right for them. Look for educational media choices that teach good values. There are a lot of great educational opportunities on the internet, but there’s also a lot of room for negative exposure. If this is a concern, keep the family computer in a public part of your home so you can see what they’re accessing online. It’s important to educate your children about proper media health, but it’s even more important to encourage your kids to be healthy in other ways. Beyond the tips mentioned above, encourage them to play outdoors and read physical books so they can participate more actively in the real world.
Limiting the time your children spend staring at a screen is good for their health. Try to keep screen-time usage to under two hours per day. Implement a rule for no screens at mealtimes, and keep all screens out of bedrooms at night. Keep track of the devices by having a communal charging dock in a shared area where you can make sure everything is plugged in for the night.
Have a Chat
Don’t shy away from warning your kids about what exists in the digital world. Explain to them that certain content isn’t age-appropriate, and teach them what movie and TV ratings mean. Remind them to be careful
Reminder About Our Firm’s Communication Policy: Our promise to you is that we don’t take inbound calls or emails while we are working on your case. Case Barnett takes no inbound unscheduled phone calls whatsoever. It makes him much more productive and helps get your case resolved faster. You can always call the office at 949-861-2990 and schedule an in-person or phone appointment, usually within 24–48 hours. This is a lot better than the endless game of “phone tag” played by most businesses today. Remember, too, that email is “quick” but is checked no more than twice a day. Replies are then scheduled into the calendar. So, if it’s really important, don’t email — call the office instead. OUR CLIENTS SAY IT BEST “Look no further! We all have preconceived ideas about lawyers, but when our child was involved in a traumatic accident in California miles away from home, we needed help. We needed someone who could help us in understanding specific legal details and insurance issues involved in California, but even more importantly, we needed someone who would be an advocate for our child and help get life back to normal. We were very fortunate to find Case Barnett. He and his team were immediately there for our child — assisting in all of the details, big and small, necessary to deal with the difficulties following an accident. Our relief was immediate that we’d found someone who cared about our child’s well-being first and foremost ... and who was going to help us ‘make it right’ again. If you’re in need of an outstanding and caring legal team in Southern California to help you ... you’ll have found them with Case Barnett.” –Terri H.
BIG GIRL RESOLUTIONS
This is Harlow, and I’ve just learned about New Year’s resolutions. They’re promises you make to yourself on Jan. 1 about things you’re gonna do before the end of the year. I’ve been thinking a lot about my resolutions, and I’ve come up with some really good ones! No. 1: Learn to dive underwater like Finn.
Simple Pancakes From Scratch Inspired by The New York Times
Last year, Mommy started taking my brother and me to swimming lessons. We’ve learned how to blow bubbles and what to do if we accidentally fall into the pool. My favorite part of swimming is learning how to float. I’ve always wanted to fly like a bird, and floating feels a lot like flying to me. I wasn’t super excited about swimming at first because I didn’t want to go underwater. Then Mommy and Daddy got me these pretty pink and purple earplugs. They keep the water out of my ears. Now I can’t wait to get in the water! Finn has been learning to dive under the water to get rings at the bottom of the pool. This year, I want to learn to dive just like my big brother! No. 2: Get Daddy to take the training wheels off my bike. I love riding my bike! Every day, I spend hours riding around. Even when it’s cold and raining, I want to be outside riding. I love going fast on my bike, but it’s hard to go really fast with the training wheels still on.
1. Heat a griddle or skillet to medium-low. 2. In a mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients (including sugar if you like a sweeter pancake). In a separate bowl, beat eggs into milk. Gently stir the liquid ingredients into the dry ones. Mix only until flour is moistened. Clumps are fine. 3. Add some butter or oil to the skillet. If the butter foams or oil shimmers, the temperature is correct. Pour in a pancake of any size, cooking until bubbles form, about 2–4 minutes. 4. Flip and cook other side for 2–4 minutes. Serve warm. • 2 cups all-purpose flour • 2 tsp baking powder • 1/4 tsp salt • 1 tbsp sugar, optional • 2 eggs • 1 3/4 cups milk • Unsalted butter or canola oil, to grease skillet Everyone should be able to make pancakes without a boxed mix. This recipe is no-frills fantastic and can probably be made without so much as a trip to the grocery store. Ingredients Directions
I really don’t need the training wheels anymore, but whenever I ask Daddy to take them off, he always says, “Oh, let’s leave them on for a couple more days.” I think Daddy’s worried about me going too fast. He doesn’t have to worry, though, because I always wear my Minnie Mouse helmet when I ride my bike! I’m really excited about my New Year’s resolutions. They’re all big girl stuff! By the end of the year, I’m going to be a big girl, too.
Do you have any exciting New Year’s resolutions?
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This publication is intended to educate the general public about personal injury and elder abuse. It is not intended to be legal advice. Every case is different.
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE: Page 1 Do We Have to Go to Trial? Page 2 Tips to Establish a Family Media Use Plan
Our Clients Say It Best
Page 3 Very Important New Year’s Resolutions
Simple Pancakes From Scratch
Page 4 The World’s Tiniest Animals NOWYOU SEE THEM ...
THE WORLD’S TINIEST ANIMALS
much bigger than an ant. These reptiles are the smallest in the world. At night, they climb high into the trees to sleep —
Often, it’s the big animals in the room — er, forest — that get all the attention. But a look at their smaller counterparts reveals a bustling world of fascinating creatures. From reptiles no larger than your fingernail to tiny primates that only come out at night, these animals are proof that size is not a limitation. Tiniest Primate: Madame Berthe’s Mouse Lemur Jumping from tree to tree, Madame Berthe’s mouse lemur is a tiny ball of nocturnal energy. At 3.6 inches long and weighing in at just an ounce, this is the world’s smallest known primate. First seen about 20 years ago in western Madagascar, it was named for charismatic conservationist and primatologist Madame Berthe Rakotosamimanana. While its body may be small, its large round eyes help it see in the dark, allowing it to catch insects for food. Found only in Kirindy Mitea National Park in western Madagascar, this species is identified as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Tiniest Reptile: Pygmy Leaf Chameleon The pygmy leaf chameleon also calls Madagascar home, but at half an inch long at birth, it is much tinier than its primate neighbor and not
though, for them, this might only mean a foot or so off the ground. Just like their larger counterparts, the pygmy leaf chameleon uses its tongue to capture its prey. Tiniest Mammal: Etruscan Shrew At an average of 3.5 centimeters long and weighing about 2 grams, the Etruscan shrew is the smallest living terrestrial mammal by mass. These timid creatures aren’t keen on being startled. In response to sudden noises, they’ve been known to jump, faint, and even drop dead. Don’t be fooled by their small stature though; relative to their body size, their brains are larger than most creatures (even humans), and shrews have a higher metabolic rate than any other animal. Because of this, they must eat 80–90% of their body weight in food each day. Of course, these are only the smallest known animals in their respective categories. As scientists and conservationists continue to explore remote parts of the world, it’s likely they’ll uncover many more natural wonders.Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4
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