Technologist - The FindLaw Legal Technology Blog

Top 5 FAQ on Using Technology in Court

Buying into new technology will probably make you better at lawyering, though it might not make you a better lawyer, per se. You'll be able to get more done, be more organized, do things on your own that would've taken whole teams just a few years ago. But, when going to court, some lawyers think that all the new tech just gets in the way.

However, ignoring technological advancements that have been made over the past two decades, especially when going to court, is a dangerous game. After all, if your opposing counsel has the latest tech, you need to be prepared for it, and may even need to be able to respond in kind.

Below, you'll find five FAQs about using tech in the courtroom that will hopefully convince you to get over your courtroom technophobia.

1. Technical Difficulties: What to Do When Gadgets Fail in Court

One of the biggest fears of attorneys is failure. And if failing in the courtroom is the result of failed technology, you know that you (and the court and your client) will only have you to blame. Knowing how to handle technical difficulties in court is paramount if you plan to bring tech into the courtroom.

2. Judges Love Tech in the Courtroom, Even When They Don't Use It

Many courtrooms across the country are already filled with tech, including networked monitors for displaying documents and exhibits, digital projectors, full on wired audio systems, as well as WiFi and wired web access. Some judges love it, others just don't use it. So use the tech that's there and make your judge happy.

3. Should You Go to Trial Paperless? Are You Kidding?

It's one thing to go paperless in the office, but going to trial paperless is a different animal altogether. Though it has disadvantages, having a paper backup for your digital trial plan is unfortunately still heavy and still a good idea.

4. Is It Fair Game to Use Your Smartphone Against Opposing Counsel?

Yes. Maybe. Probably? So long as you're being ethical? As new tech continues to be used in new ways, what you're actually doing probably matters more than how you're doing it or what tech you're doing it with.

5. Oculus Rift: Coming to a Courtroom Near You?

Using virtual reality in the courtroom may not be as far off as you might think. The Oculus Rift and similar devices could potentially be used for scene reconstruction, virtual site visits, and other demonstrative exhibits and evidence viewing, or even manipulation. But are we ready for that yet? And would courts even allow it?

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