iPads in jury selection

It wasn’t too long after the iPad’s introduction that enterprising lawyers developed apps to use in jury selection. I have not purchased or used any of the apps that are out there, mostly because the information I could obtain about the apps didn’t tell me much about what they could really do for me.

Ken Broda-Bahm has a short piece and a 15-minute video review of two iPad apps for use in voir dire. The reviews are thorough, and he establishes criteria to use in measuring the apps in terms of usefulness.

At this point, I have my doubts about whether we will ever see an iPad app for jury selection that really works well. The reason for my doubts is simple: the approach to jury selection is almost unique to each lawyer. Some use the grid and Post-It note system discussed in the video. Some use simple legal pad note taking. I think it would be hard to develop an app that would allow attorneys to voir dire the potential jurors in their own way, and not force the attorneys to adapt to the app’s system. To cover all of the possible approaches and philosophies (not to mention personal habits) would be daunting.

Of course, no system is perfect, so I shouldn’t expect an iPad app to be perfect either. The secret to success in the app world so far seems to be to do one thing and do it really, really well. Maybe the secret for developers looking to create an app for jury selection is to take one part of the process (perhaps recording information gathered from questionnaires, Internet research, and the other tasks done in the days before trial) and to do that well.

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2 thoughts on “iPads in jury selection

  1. William, I am a trial lawyer from South Carolina and the chief architect of JuryPad. Hopefully our app will change your mind about the usefulness of an iPad app for jury selection! Please let me know what you think.

    Here is the link to our company, Bench & Bar, LLC: http://benchandbarllc.com. You can also visit us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/benchandbarllc.com. Lastly, here is the link to JuryPad on the iTunes Store: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/jurypad/id580845085?mt=8

    Take care,

    Stephan Futeral – Bench & Bar, LLC

    1. Stephan, thanks for your comment and letting me know about JuryPad. I will need to take a look at that. Unfortunately, jury trials are becoming rarer and rarer in the world of civil cases, so I don’t have any upcoming trials to put it through its paces. Still, a jury selection app or trial presentation app is the sort of thing you want to try out and play with well before your trial begins. 🙂

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