Ethos 2019 Seminar
Become a Better Trial Lawyer

 
 

Spend five days with Rick Friedman and the people who have helped him become a better trial lawyer.  

  • Who should attend: Any practicing lawyer who does no civil defense or prosecution work.

  • What: Spend five days with Rick Friedman and the people who have helped him become a better trial lawyer.

  • Limited Availability: Seminar will be limited to just 45 people for greater interaction.

  • What will be covered: What stands in the way of you being the trial lawyer you wish to be? That is what we are going to explore.

  • When: Starting the evening of November 12th, around 7:00, and ending the evening of the 16th. In deference to those coming from the East Coast, we will start at 8:00 am the mornings of the 13th, 14th, 15th and 16th and end each evening at approximately 8 p.m. We will eat lunch and dinner together. (Meals are included).

    Where: The event will be held at the Bremerton Convention Center. We have reserved rooms at the Hampton Inn, which is adjacent to the Convention Center. (You must pay for your own hotel stay) Getting to the location is easy; fly to SeaTac Airport (SEA) and you have three routes open to you:

  1. Take light-rail to Seattle, and take the ferry across the water to Bremerton. The hotels and Convention Center are just 1-3 blocks from the ferry terminal. Total time, approximately 2 hours.

  2. Take the Kitsap Bus from the airport to the hotels. Total time approximately 1.5 hours.

  3. Rent a car. Total driving time approximately 1-1.5 hours, depending on traffic.

     Aristotle famously said that there are three means of persuasion available to a speaker: those grounded in reasoning or logic (logos), those grounded in the emotions and psychology of the audience (pathos) and those grounded in the credibility of the speaker (ethos).
        In law school—if not before—we are taught to use logos. We trial lawyers love logos. If only the courtroom were a place where logos always prevailed. Through hard, grinding work and perseverance, we could guarantee that the good guys always won; or, we could figure out the logical defects in our case and know when it is time to settle. We would be in full control of the process. Logos is not only within our comfort zone, it is our preferred playground.
        Alas, there is our audience: the jurors and the judges. The messy emotions and psychology of these decision-makers often resists our beautiful, logical constructs. We are taught very little about this in law school, but in recent years, there has been an avalanche of books, speakers, and seminars purporting to teach us how to use pathos to persuade, by addressing the emotions and psychology of our audience. This too is well within our comfort zone. We look outward for the techniques that will persuade (manipulate?) our jurors.   
        But what of ethos, the credibility of the speaker; the aspect of persuasion Aristotle said was the most important? Most advocacy texts and teachers acknowledge its importance. We hear and read things like: “trial is a battle for credibility,” or “never do anything that will hurt your credibility.” We are told that to have credibility, we must be prepared, respectful and scrupulously honest. We are told to never overstate our case in opening. And that is pretty much the end of it.
        But there is much more to ethos, much more to being an effective courtroom leader. What stands in the way of you being the trial lawyer you want to be?

  • Cost: $1,400 tuition. This will include lunch and dinner on the 13th through 17th. You will need to make your own hotel reservations. The block rate at the Hampton Inn is $129 per night (this includes breakfast).

  • Who: Any practicing lawyer who does no civil defense or prosecution work. We only have room for 45 people, who will be divided into three groups of 15.