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The Reptile Theory (Part 1) – Welcome to the Nuclear Age

Since 2009, “the Reptile” has been striking fear into the hearts of defense lawyers throughout the US …well, and everyone else in the transportation, medical, manufacturing, retail, and hospitality industries…and everyone else who employs people…or owns property…and all of their insurers. So basically everyone who owns, runs, insures, defends, or manages risk for a business …

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Dissecting the Reptile: Tips for Using Crucial Conversations to Locate the Reptile Heart

By now we’ve all become acquainted with the Reptile Theory: a litigation strategy used by plaintiffs’ attorneys to obtain disproportionately large verdicts through various forms of psychological manipulation. Naturally, most defense efforts focus on legal strategies for every phase of litigation and trial. And while it’s true that our legal skills are necessary to combat …

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Tips for Combating Plaintiff’s Deposition Tricks #10: Force of Nature

TRICK: The Victim-Villain Vortex. TIP: Become a Force of Nature. Well folks, we made it! Welcome to Part 10 of our series on plaintiffs’ deposition tricks. For our final article, we’re coming full circle and taking you back to the storm and all of its chaos. Except this time, instead of managing the storm, we’re …

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Tips for Combating Plaintiff’s Deposition Tricks #9: The False Horizon of Factual Manipulation

TRICK: Manipulate the Factual Premise of the Question to Create a False Horizon. TIP: Trust Your Instruments. As we near the end of our 10-part exposé, by now it’s probably clear that, in a deposition, the main goal of the plaintiff’s attorney is to manipulate a desired outcome. Thus far, we have focused primarily on …

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Tips for Combating Plaintiff’s Deposition Tricks #8: The Fog of Confusion (Part 3)

TRICK: Use the Fog of Confusion to Extract False Admissions. TIP: Stay Alert. For the last two weeks, we have been discussing the dangers presented by the Fog of Confusion and exposing various Confusion tactics plaintiffs’ attorneys might use in a deposition. Until now, however, we have focused on Confusion solely as a path toward …

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Tips for Combating Plaintiffs’ Deposition Tricks: #5 – The Undercurrent of Humiliation – Part 2

In this 10-part series, Tips for Combatting Plaintiffs’ Deposition Tricks, we expose some common tricks that plaintiffs’ attorneys frequently use to gain the upper hand during a personal-injury deposition. If you find yourself in the deponent’s chair, here are some tips for recognizing and combatting these tricks so you can stay calm, maintain control, and …

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Tips for Combating Plaintiffs’ Deposition Tricks: #6 The Fog of Confusion (Part 1)

TRICK: Induce Low Road Cognition with the Fog of Confusion. TIP: Plan Ahead. Welcome back to our 10-part series exposing common tricks used by plaintiffs’ attorneys in depositions and what you can do to prepare for them. So far, we’ve been focusing on the importance of maintaining “High Road Cognition” in order to best represent …

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