We're going to depart just a little bit on the format of our next Guerrilla Guide to the Law.
We're still working on The Guerrilla Guide to Applying for Social Security Disability and The Guerrilla Guide to Depositions (expected to be released this summer) but we decided to put a rush and finish The Guerrilla Guide to Preparing a Trial Notebook explaining why and how you use this tool since we found, to our surprise, very few people who represent themselves know about these and thus are not preparing their cases correctly.
A trial notebook is just a way to organize the materials which will be essential for trial and enable you to locate anything within a few seconds.
This Guerrilla Guide will be short and to the point, with an explanation of the various sections of the notebook, why they are important, and then we will have a section of the website available where you can download and print the tabs for use with a three ring binder.
However, just because the book will be short does not mean it is not important. As a matter of fact, Lawyer X, the author, tells us that it is one of the first skills he taught associates and new lawyers at his firm and that when a trial notebook is done correctly any lawyer in his firm could pick up the notebook and read through it and be able to take a case to trial the same day (although that's not the recommended practice).
He also attributes his high win rate at trial (90%+) at least in part to his insistence that he personally prepare his own notebooks and that the notebook be started as soon as he agreed to represent the client on the case.
If you are representing yourself and need this information as soon as possible be sure and drop us an email and let us know and we will arrange for you to receive a draft copy before the actual release date. The draft copy won't be the edited version and may still have some typos, etc. but it will enable you to get started and when the final version is released you will receive that copy as well.
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