diverse focus group

Lathrop Law Focus Groups Help Lawyers Help Their Clients

Every trial runs the risk of an unexpected outcome. No matter how much time or effort you put into preparing a seemingly unassailable case, a firm understanding of facts and theory is not always sufficient to overcome a jury inclined to skepticism. 

However, for all the risks inherent to trial, lawyers have options to help mitigate uncertainty. Focus groups can offer an opportunity to put your arguments and presentation in perspective. Having an experienced focus group lawyer conduct your focus group is essential. Done right with the Law Office of Matthew A. Lathrop, PC, LLO, a legal focus group could inform your strategy in a surprising number of ways. 

The Advantage of Legal Focus Groups 

A well-designed legal focus group replicates trial conditions by carefully selecting a cohort of participants representative of your potential jury pool. During a session, the focus group is presented with key facts, theories, arguments, evidence, and samples of expert testimony. 

Although no amount of preparation can mitigate every risk inherent to trial, a focus group could help you

Connect With Jurors 

Even the most experienced attorneys sometimes make the mistake of conflating their in-depth understanding of the law with the practical appeal of an argument. However, your interpretation of facts may not coincide with jurors’ impressions—especially when jurors come from very different backgrounds. 

Focus groups allow lawyers to delve into the “jury mindset,” understanding how a jury may perceive facts from a lay perspective. 

Resolve Jury Biases 

Speaking to focus group participants can lead to a better understanding of which biases may be prevalent in a particular jurisdiction. If bias, or biases, appear unusually widespread, they can form the basis of questions used to disqualify real-world jurors who might be unable to separate themselves from emotion during trial and deliberation. 

Identify Strengths and Correct Weaknesses

Your interpretation of facts and events might prejudice you toward a particular conclusion, but there’s no guarantee that a jury will find even the most compelling arguments equally persuasive. 

A legal focus group could help you: 

  • Refine questions for voir dire 
  • Establish whether a lay or expert witness is likable or communicates information in a way that jurors find relatable and useful 
  • Assess the impact of your arguments and identify unexpected strengths or subtle weaknesses 

In some cases, a legal focus group could—and should—influence a decision to take a case to trial or settle out-of-court. 

Maximizing the Rewards of Legal Focus Groups

Legal focus groups can afford attorneys a real-world advantage in court, but only if conducted at arm’s length. 

It may be tempting to assemble your own pool of mock jurors. However, relying on in-house resources to recruit group participants and assess arguments creates a significant risk of bias. 

The Law Office of Matthew A. Lathrop, PC, LLO, provides legal focus group services to firms in all 50 states. We help other attorneys prepare for high-stakes cases by

Ensuring Diversity 

A focus group fails to serve its purpose when participants are less-than-representative of your region’s pool of potential jurors. Before arranging a session, the Law Office of Matthew A. Lathrop works to ensure that participants come from a diverse range of socioeconomic backgrounds that match the demographic profile of your jurisdiction. 

Keeping Confidentiality 

After selection, our firm will draft and execute enforceable non-disclosure agreements to keep your strategy safe from opposing counsel. 

Assessing Your Case

We will meet with you before your focus group session begins. During your initial pre-session briefing, we’ll review the facts of your case and reach an understanding of your desired outcome. By considering your goals and circumstances, we maximize your investment and keep participant discussions productive and insightful. 

Leading Intensive Discussion 

Once your session begins, you’ll have an opportunity to move through a recreated trial effectively. Our focus group lawyer will guide the discussion, keeping group members focused on the relevant facts and asking questions designed to glean information on a case’s apparent strengths and subtle weaknesses. 

Reviewing Your Strategies for Success 

Lathrop Law can analyze the focus group’s findings and debrief you on the focus group’s observations, suggestions, and reservations. 

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