I just returned from the American Association for Justice’s 2008 Trucking Litigation Seminar where, with hundred’s of lawyers from around the country, we gathered together to talk about the complicated world of tractor trailer litigation. The program was designed to teach lawyers new to the area of trucking litigation how to handle cases and to give experienced lawyers new tips and insights to take their practices to a new level. It was a great seminar and I would like to thank all the staff at AAJ who made it possible as well as this year’s chair of AAJ’s Interstate Trucking Litigation Group Steven Gursten from Michigan. So what did we discuss?

I presented a program on the Direct Examination of the Accident Reconstructionist, a critical witness in a trucking case that can make sense of conflicting witness statements and the physical evidence left at a crash scene. Other speakers and their topics included:

  1. Michael Leizerman – How to Discover Service Violations and What to do With Them
  2. Edward Hershewe – Convincing Arguments fro Damages in Trucking Cases
  3. Steven Friedman – Spoliation of Evidence
  4. Stephen Gorney – Technology Update in Trucking Cases (GPS, Black Boxes, and On    Board Computer Operating Systems)
  5. Emily Hawk Raley – Truck Driver Training and Standards
  6. Sylvester James – Themes in Trucking Cases
  7. Eddie Davidson – Jury Selection in a Trucking Case
  8. James Sloan – Investigating the Crash and Accident Reconstruction
  9. Kenneth Shigley – Understanding NHTSA
  10. Robert Bailey – Crafting the Trial Story for Trucking Cases
  11. Richard Holmes – Common Pitfalls in Handling Trucking Cases – The Defense Perspective

Specialized programs like this make a huge difference in a lawyer’s ability to handle trucking cases. It puts the sharpest legal minds together in one room talking about one thing, how to handle those tragic cases where someone was injured or killed from a crash with a tractor trailer. The faculty did an outstanding job and are to be commended for all their hard work. I was honored to be asked to speak and  be a part of such a highly respected group.