Trial of a Police Liability Case Under Section 1983


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About This Course

Master the trial of a police liability case under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 – whether yours is a high- frequency or high-exposure case, and whether you represent the plaintiff or the defense. Using examples, this practical CLE program will cover the pretrial and settlement conference and preparation of your witnesses.

It then goes to the trial itself: jury selection for your side, opening statements, effective examination and cross-examination of plaintiff’s and defense witnesses on both liability and damages, and the best closing arguments. It provides guidance on jury instructions, verdict forms and handling the qualified immunity defense if it survives for trial. Finally, the program includes post-trial motions and fee petitions for prevailing plaintiffs.

Attorneys for both plaintiffs and the defense will be able to:

  • Evaluate your case
  • Prepare for the final pre-trial conference and presentation of witnesses
  • Pick the best jury
  • Master examination and cross-examination of liability and damages witnesses
  • Give memorable openings and closings
  • Draft special jury instructions and verdict forms
  • Handle the qualified immunity question at trial
  • Protect the record for appeal
  • And prepare and defend attorney’s fee petitions

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