Courtroom Concepts Just Keep Winning!

Posted by Keith Cartwright

Recently, two of our cases have been featured in Texas Lawyer showcasing our clients victories.

Congratulations to the Hagans Burdine Montgomery Rustay firm on your recent win in the courtroom!


"Courtroom Concepts’ trial consultants provide our legal teams an extra measure of confidence during high-stakes litigation. By assuming responsibility for the entire visual presentation—everything from displaying exhibits and PowerPoint presentations to setting up equipment—they allow us to concentrate on winning the trial rather than risk being distracted by technological details."

Fred Hagans
Hagans Burdine Montgomery Rustay



Congratulations to the Watts Guerra firm on your recent victory!
Not guilty on all counts.


"For years, I've counted on Courtroom Concepts to help me prove my
clients' cases. When my own liberty was on the line, my first call was to Keith Cartwright and the graphics professionals at
Courtroom Concepts."

Mikal Watts
Watts Guerra




At Courtroom Concepts, our mission is to help attorneys persuade jurors, judges, and mediators by showing a clear, compelling visual story aligned with their case’s themes, strategies and facts.

As part of the trial team—both behind the scenes and in the courtroom—we take an active role in advising attorneys on how legal graphics can provide a powerful advantage.

Courtroom Concepts tailors trial graphics and litigation support services for each case’s strategic needs.

If you are prepping for a trial and have questions, contact us for a free initial consultation. or email us at

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Topics: Trial graphics, trial support, Texas Lawyer

Congratulations to Mikal Watts!

Posted by Nancy Rose


Congratulations to our client, Mikal Watts, on his recent acquittal — Not Guilty on ALL counts!

It was an honor to assist such a brilliant litigator and contribute visuals and trial support as part of this phenomenal team over the past several months. Bravo to Mikal and the whole Watts Guerra team!


"For years, I've counted on Courtroom Concepts to help me prove my clients' cases.  When my own liberty was on the line, my first call was to Courtroom Concepts.  It was important to me to have the best team possible to help me prove my case, so for visual and in-trial support I looked to Courtroom Concepts. Before and during trial, their professionalism and creative support went above and beyond my expectations."  -- Mikal Watts


If you are prepping for a trial and have a need for, or questions about litigation support or trial graphics, contact us for a free initial consultation. or email us at


Below is a sampling of articles about Mikal Watts' acquittal:

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Topics: Trial graphics, litigation support, trial support, Mikal Watts, BP Oilspill trials

How Binge-Watching TV Is Changing Your Jurors

Posted by Nancy Rose

Binge-watching TV has become more mainstream than ever, and audiences today expect riveting stories and high-quality visuals. 

99% of American homes have at least one TV and the average viewer spends 3½ hours in front of a screen on weekdays, and 4 hours daily on weekends. Today’s online on-demand media services such as Netflix—which allow viewers to watch multiple episodes in a single sitting—have mastered the art of keeping viewers on the couch. In fact, a new Deloitte survey shows that 70% of Americans routinely watch 5 episodes in one sitting. Clearly, television has raised the bar on what it takes to get and hold a viewer’s attention.

When today’s audiences enter your jury box, they expect emotional narratives they can relate to and visuals that captivate their attention.

For the average juror who has grown accustomed to contemporary multimedia entertainment, a bulleted list no longer does the job. It is not enough to make your argument convincing—it must be engaging. Providing today’s jurors with high-quality visual information gives you a strategic advantage in the courtroom.


We live in a fast-paced century when most of us complain we have too much to do and too little time. So how does TV manage to hold our attention, keeping us glued to a screen for hours each day? This paradox offers potent secrets that can help you win in court. First, let’s take a closer look at binge-watching to understand TV’s power over viewers. According to one Netflix survey:

  • Binge-watching is the new standard.
  • The majority of viewers feel binge-watching is a positive part of their lives.
  • Most viewers say TV has improved so dramatically that there is too much to watch and not enough time.
  • While Twitter, Instagram, and other social media create fragmented communication, viewers have a strong appetite for long, complex narratives.

The Washington Post chart below shows the extent to which viewers are willing to invest a great deal of their time in a program they find engaging:



Visual storytelling—think rock art—has been around almost as long as humans have. Yet, the demand for visual information, whether fictional or fact-based, appears greater than ever. And today’s TV viewer is today’s juror. Television caters to millions and enjoys a sizable budget. Litigation, on the other hand, caters to twelve jurors and a judge. While you cannot compare visuals designed for television with those used in courtrooms, arbitrations, and mediations, you can apply the essential concepts that make contemporary TV irresistible.

In the courtroom, a litigator’s job is to tell their clients’ side of a story and make it persuasive. Reading bullet points from slides tends to remind jurors of feeling bored in school—not the effect you want. Let’s talk about how you can engage jurors so they don't get distracted, giving you a strong advantage in the courtroom.


Research tells us that a picture is truly worth a thousand words. So why is this cliché a powerful fact?


65% of us are visual learners, and we tend to learn faster and retain more from visual information. This is because our long-term memory easily stores images, and they are transmitted 60,000 times faster than text. Pairing text with a relevant, meaningful image is the way we learn best—and are most likely to understand and recall what we have learned. Visuals elicit emotions, and emotions engage and motivate us.

However, research also tells us that if visual information is too complex or confusing, the mind has a tendency to lose interest.

Based on what we know about the power of imagery, here are two key strategies to keep jurors focused on your argument:

1) Simplify for Compelling Visual Composition

Creating strong visuals takes more than multiple fonts and spinning clip art images. And if not designed well, visuals can make concepts confusing. It is essential to begin by strategizing.

Brainstorm with others who have worked on the case, and/or hire seasoned graphic consultants who can see the big picture (pun intended), something that may be difficult for those who have been deeply involved in the details of a case for months or even years.

While facts and details are integral components in litigation, when a story is highly complex, graphics that simplify your argument can greatly improve your impact on jurors. Images that take the juror step-by-step through a complicated scenario can clarify your client’s side of the story.

An essential strategy is to connect simple visuals to specific themes within your case. For example, if your case involves telling a story about there being a limited amount of oil available beneath the surface of an oil rig, you might create a graphic illustrating a glass with a straw to show what suddenly appears obvious—as liquid disappears into the straw, the glass empties.

Here are 3 tips for making your argument clear and easy to follow:  

  • Utilize similar themes and visuals throughout the trial. Once you have taken the time to develop strong themes and visuals, use them frequently. Repetition helps the viewer to remember, and continuity in colors and styles provides a sense of professionalism. Familiarity brings emotional comfort for the viewer.
  • Do not overcomplicate visuals. Too much information on one slide makes it hard for the juror to keep up with your argument.
  • Focus on one issue at a time. Don’t try to prove several points in a single graphic.

Keep it simple and jurors will be more likely to remember the points you made once they are in the back room deliberating.

2) Connect with Viewers on a Personal Level 

What catches viewers’ attention, making them want or even need more? Emotion!

Emotion drives us—whether or not we are aware of its power. Even a TV show with famous actors, great sets, and top writers will lose viewers’ interest if it does not connect with audiences on an emotional level. As litigators, you have the challenge of providing numerous facts important for the case to jurors, facts that may seem tedious to them. You need jurors to evaluate those facts, but equally important, you need them to relate to the story those facts tell.

Audiences respond when they can relate to a situation. This is because more areas of the brain engage when we hear stories—rather than facts alone. Consider the following diagrams that show the science behind storytelling:



Here are Several Ways to Connect with Jurors:

  • Make it personal: tell a story about yourself or your client that allows the juror to see the human side of you, the litigator, and/or your client. For example, if you represent a plaintiff in an elderly abuse case involving a nursing home, you might emphasize how hurtful it would be to you if the same thing happened to your parent, and choose a visual that represents the facts from an emotional point of view.
  • Make it relevant: make sure the story you tell is one with which any juror is likely to relate. If an image of a car illustrates an analogy, use a vehicle that the average juror might own—perhaps a Ford or Toyota rather than a Lamborghini.
  • Be Consistent: consistency provides clarity and even a sense of comfort for the juror, who may feel confused or even overwhelmed by the responsibility she or he faces in analyzing contrasting legal arguments.

When jurors can see things from your client’s perspective, they will more easily embrace your client’s side of the story.


This article was brought to you by Courtroom Concepts: Visualizing Technology.
If you are prepping for a trial and have questions, contact us for a free initial consultation. or email us at

See what other highly successful litigators say about us:

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Topics: Trial graphics, jurors, binge-watching, Powerful Presentations

What’s Your Jurors’ Learning Style?

Posted by Nancy Rose

As our team was preparing for a speaking engagement at a CLE recently, we came across an infographic that was quite insightful. The information within this infographic was not specifically created for the litigation world, but the statistics it provides definitely helps provide insight about potential jurors.

Over the past several decades technology has reinvented the way we intake knowledge, which affects how jurors are hearing, seeing and understanding evidence and ideas.

There is no doubt that technology affects learning styles, but it wasn’t until we studied these graphics that we realized the vast differences in the way various generations learn. The screen shots below were taken from an infographic created by

The various generations we will be discussing today are:

“Baby Boomers: Post WWII baby boom, born roughly 1946-1964
Generation X: Born early to mid. 1960’s to early 1980’s
Generation Y: Often called the Millennials. Born 1980 to late 1990’s
Generation Z: Name undecided. Born early 2000’s and on.”

millennial jurors



First, let’s take a look at how the various generations have adapted to technology. See the screen shot below and notice that “90% of millennials use the Internet.” Also, note that “20% of millennials have posted a video of themselves.”

What that means: Millennials are accustomed to having a great deal of highly engaging data at their fingertips. This means they are likely to be more receptive to video depositions and informational graphics rather than a large amount of text displayed on the courtroom screen.

Millennial jurors


Social Media:

On the next screen shot, you will see that an astounding “75% of millennials use a social networking site.”

What that means: Millennials are sharing more information on social media than generations in the past. This increases the possibility of jurors in this age group innocently sharing information about the case when they are serving as jurors. Keep this information in mind when instructing jurors about NOT discussing the case at hand. Instructions, now more than ever, should be specific and clear because the perceived boundaries are different than they used to be.

millennial jurors social media


Main Source of News:

One final set of statistics we will share with you is how the various generations get their main source of news. Check out the chart below and note that for millennials, their dominant source of news has become the Internet. This chart shows that only 30% of Baby Boomers use the Internet for their main source of news while Generation X is 53% and Millennials are 59%.

What this means: Your jurors have access to much more information that could be related to your case than with traditional news. In addition, this information demonstrates that as younger jurors are in your jury box, they may expect a higher level of engagement and information. They are accustomed to more than just words. The Internet is filled with high-end infographics, complex charts, timelines, videos and animations.

millennials main source of news jurors


This blog covered a few useful statistics from this infographic. If you want more information­­­­­­­, click on the source link at the bottom of the page.

The bottom line is that knowing more about your jurors will give you an advantage in the courtroom.

Knowledge is power!

This article was brought to you by Courtroom Concepts. Our team has been providing litigators with trial graphics and in trial support for over twenty years. If you have questions about an upcoming trial, arbitration, hearing or mediation, give us a call at 713-651-9333 or email us at


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Topics: Trial graphics, millennials, litigation support, trial support

Top 10 Tips for Creating a Successful Litigation Timeline

Posted by Nancy Rose

A successful timeline can help you can connect with the jury so that they can understand your side of the story. Aside from exhibits and depositions, timelines are the most common strategic evidence used in trial. Even when a case does not require numerous or complex legal graphics, timelines are an excellent way for you to reveal the big picture.

Based on our decades of collective experience in the litigation field, we have carefully analyzed the process of creating timelines and have come up with our “Top 10 Tips for Creating a Successful Litigation Timeline.”

Click here to download your free copy today


Think BIG Picture


Lawyers often work on a particular case for years. When this happens, every piece of evidence begins to seem critical. While all evidence is important, not all data should appear on a timeline. Deciding what to include may not be an easy task. You will have to take a step back, be ruthless with the entries, and think BIG PICTURE. What information is absolutely necessary to summarize your account of what happened?

Click below  to download your free copy today


To learn more about how Courtroom Concepts can provide visual support and assist with your firm’s winning strategies, please contact Keith Cartwright at 713-651-9333 or

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How To Help Make Mediation Visuals Faster and Better

Posted by Keith Cartwright

When it’s crunch time before mediation, attorneys rarely have a minute to spare. Here are some practical ways you and your support teams can work more efficiently with your graphics partner so you can focus your energies elsewhere

Provide Courtroom Concepts the most current pleading as soon as you schedule your mediation. The more we can learn about your case early on, the more prepared we will be to assist you in developing effective visuals.

- Send us an outline of your mediation story. Even listing a few basic categories can focus your arguments and reduce the time you will spend later reorganizing the slides.

- Consider how long you will have to make your case before the mediator. A one-hour presentation consists of roughly 85 slides. Presentations typically get pared down during revisions, but if you can keep your drafts to a manageable number of slides, you can reduce expenses and save yourself some long nights.

- Encourage your support teams to send materials to Courtroom Concepts in a manner that increases efficiency. Providing text for slides that is typed, proofed, and in digital form greatly speeds the process. Video editing can be time-consuming, so have tapes, DVDs, and ASCIIs sent to us as early as possible with pre-proofed page/line designations. Send two sets of documents for scanning—a clean copy and a highlighted version indicating the callouts. Photos and illustrations should also be provided as soon as possible. Designate a point person whom Courtroom Concepts can contact with any questions about the materials.

- Create headers for document and graphic slides that hammer home your point. Writing the headers may prod you to examine

The sooner Courtroom Concepts can supply you with a draft presentation, the longer you will have to refine it and practice it prior to show time—and the less likely you’ll encounter sticker shock at the end of the process. Remember, the beauty of technology is that nothing is set in stone. All Courtroom Concepts presentations are works in progress until our clients tell us they are ready to make their case.

To learn more about how Courtroom Concepts can help you make your case, please visit us online at or call Keith Cartwright at 713-252-5087

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Three Great Legal Teams - Three Great Results

Posted by Keith Cartwright

Courtroom Concepts has the honor to provide our visual litigation support expertise to some of the finest lawyers in the country. Recently we assisted in some outstanding results and below are a few examples of how Courtroom Concepts can assist you:

On the plaintiff’s side, Courtroom Concepts assisted Fred Hagans and Kendall Montgomery in a complex breach of contract and tortious interference jury trial. The Verdict: a damages award of $83.5 million dollars. Fred Hagans said "Keith did a great job of making the trial presentations, including individual exhibits, a seamless part of the trial. At the conclusion of the trial, several jurors asked that I tell Keith what a good job he did and how much it helped them understand the case."
Hicks Thomas for the defense:

Led by John Thomas, Hicks Thomas successfully defended a 10-year, high-stakes lawsuit in which the City of Modesto California had sought $162 million in damages against R.R. Street & Co. The jury verdict for Thomas’s client: no liability. John Thomas said: "Courtroom Concepts was an integral part of our trial team. From jury selection to closing argument, they worked tirelessly to get the job done. After six months of trial covering numerous contaminated sites, Nancy Rose and her team excelled at developing tools to organize the evidence and graphics to simplify complex concepts. This group is my new "go to” trial support team."
Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Sorrels, Agosto & Friend in mediation:

After an exceptional mediation presentation by Courtroom Concepts, Nick Nichols, Daniel Horowitz and George Chandler achieved a substantial confidential settlement for their client in an automobile personal injury case. Nick Nichols said “Your expertise and excellent animation presentation were extremely beneficial in bringing this matter to a successful conclusion. We sincerely enjoyed working with you and thank you so much for a job so very well done.”

To learn more about how Courtroom Concepts can provide visual support to your firm’s winning strategy; please call Keith Cartwright at 713-651-9333. Also, you can check out our extensive library of successful visuals at

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Mediations are becoming a tougher battleground!

Posted by Nancy Rose

Current litigation economics has shown that mediations have become more of a necessity. With the mediation table more frequently becoming the final battleground of cases, attorneys are bringing more ammunition with them to the win the battle.
Because mediations are yielding more results than in the past, they are beginning to be more competitive in all aspects. One example is that they are becoming more competitive by bringing professional visual presentations to the table. Mediation visual presentations are more helpful because they provide the attorney huge advantages during the opening session, such as:
  • Displaying visual evidence for greater impact
  • Psychological edge during negotiations
  • Showing the opposing counsel your ability to educate jurors on the complexity of your case
  • If the negotiations fail, you are visually ready for Trial

Just a few years ago, high end presentations were the exception in the courtroom. Now they are commonplace.This is also beginning to happen with mediations. Be prepared!

The competition is intense. The more ammo you have, the better chances of winning the battle. Let us be part of your arsenal at mediation. We have a great deal of experience helping lawyers win.

If you have created an in-house presentation then you already understand how visuals can impact your case. Good job! Now let us make it better. Once you have brought in the initial data, let us reformat the presentation into a visual polished high end professional presentation. We can and will assist you with your victory.

We will help you settle with more!

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Topics: Mediations

The Harris County Courthouse Is Going Digital. Are You Ready?

Posted by Keith Cartwright

In 2006, attorneys with technological expertise on their side are going to have an even greater advantage in the courtroom. The new Harris County courthouse, which is slated to open early next year, is embracing the 21st century in a big way by going digital. It is already possible to file documents electronically, but in the future the possible may become “The Expected.” At a minimum, in some courtrooms voluminous boxes of paper will be a thing of the past. Many judges will require attorneys to submit exhibits electronically and to be able to call them up electronically during trial, a process which will be facilitated by the new courtrooms’ advanced wiring.

To save costs, some law firms may attempt to keep their document scanning and preparation in-house, while others may be tempted to seek out budget services from photocopying chains. However, attempting to cut corners on a relatively inexpensive—but crucial—part of your case may not be a good idea.

There is No Room For Error when creating a good document presentation system for use in trial. The process requires meticulous, painstaking work that goes beyond merely scanning the documents. During trial you want a system that allows you to move through the documents quickly, seamlessly and without a moment’s confusion. You need every page—the correct page—to appear instantaneously and to be clean, sharp, and properly numbered. In addition, the most effective system will let you highlight and zoom into key passages in a flash. Such systems should be created by a litigation firm like Courtroom Concepts that has years of trial experience and a strong commitment to providing attorneys flawless presentations.

The new digital courthouse will no doubt also inspire more lawyers to leverage technology’s power to tell stories and explain difficult concepts to jurors who have become accustomed to—and have come to expect—messages accompanied by images and interactivity. Whether you need assistance creating a multimedia presentation, an animation, or a documentation presentation system, Courtroom Concepts is your visual partner in the digital courtroom.

To learn more about how Courtroom Concepts can help you make your case, please visit us online at or call Keith Cartwright at 713-651-9333.

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