In his forty-plus year legal career, NBTA member Mark Mandell has helped countless plaintiffs. He has tried many multi-million dollar cases to successful verdict and has received the highest negligence verdict in Rhode Island history - $25,590,000.

Attorney Mandell is a former president of the Rhode Island Trial Lawyers Association and holds many other distinguished memberships and awards. He has recently put his experience on paper to help other attorneys in the book Case Framing, where he shares proven methods developed over the course of his esteemed career. Available from Trial Guides, the book “uses transcripts and other examples to show how readers can use the Case Framing method to succeed in depositions, settlement and mediation negotiations, cases with multiple defendants, and cases where the opposing party has admitted liability in an attempt to reduce your ability to obtain a just verdict.” Below is an excerpt:

An overall case frame is the fundamental principle that gives meaning to our case. A case frame by definition must possess two qualities. First, it must have relevance to the facts of the case. Second, a case frame should be a principle that has a virtually universal application in society at large.

A case frame defines the “essence” of what has happened in our case. As a result of its universal applicability, the overall case frame strikes a responsive chord in each juror. Because it is so real and also so set in each juror’s life experiences, it has a unique and powerful effect at trial.

Let me provide a few examples of overall case frames.

When asked what the case frame was in the O.J. Simpson criminal trial, most people will provide one of the three following answers:

  1. “If it doesn’t fit, you must acquit.”

  2. Police misconduct/racial discrimination

  3. A “rush to judgment.”

While these are each powerful arguments, what I call the “I just can’t get over issues” that exist in every case, they are not the overall case frame.

To me, the overall case frame in the O.J. Simpson criminal trial was “wrongful accusation.”

The three powerful one-liners set forth above all relate to and help carry the overall case frame of wrongful accusation. Because of police misconduct and a rush to judgment a wrongful accusation occurred. Because of the wrongful accusation, the bloody glove didn’t fit.

Wrongful accusation is a principle of virtually universal application. Every one of us has been wrongfully accused of something.

Whether the wrongful accusation is objectively big or small, it is always considered big to the accused.

Read more by purchasing Case Framing from Trial Guides.