Ask Amy: How do you feel about the approach of discussing your weaknesses, concerns about the case, in voir dire?

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I always recommend asking about the problem areas of the case in voir dire. That is all I care about – how do they respond to the problem areas. I need to know so I can get them off for cause in voir dire, rather than having them talk about it in the jury room. Voir dire is not for wimps; it takes a lot of guts to ask about the problem areas of the case and face the answers.  Recently we had a case where the driver was supposed to wear corrective lenses and didn’t. At the time of the collision, he had corrective lenses written on his driver’s license. We thought that was a problem area, so we asked: “without hearing any evidence, how many of you feel that if a person has corrective lenses written on his or her driver’s license and is not wearing their glasses, they are automatically at fault? Somewhat at fault? Did not see something? Cause the collision? Why or why not? Can you think of a situation where someone is not wearing their glasses and it does not matter? Let’s discuss. What are your thoughts or feelings about people who do not wear corrective lenses or glasses while driving?” Another one of my favorite questions is “I have a concern about XYZ. Should I be concerned about that with you? Why or why not?”

 

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