It is a well-established principle that good case preparation is the key to good advocacy. Indeed, the most common feedback we receive from our delegates is an appreciation of the training we provide on the key elements of trial preparation and, in particular, how using a Trial Strategy Plan (TSP) changes the manner in which they prepare any case, enabling an advocate to have confidence that all of the aspects of trial preparation have been covered.
This interactive and innovative course will enable you to develop the skills and confidence necessary to allow you to effectively plan for and run a Criminal Trial at Court. It will help you to conduct an in-depth analysis of the evidence; develop an organised strategic approach and identify all of the steps to be taken to be fully and effectively prepared for a trial. We hope that this course will change your whole approach to trial preparation.
This course is suitable for new entrants to the legal profession looking to develop the confidence to conduct trials, those at an intermediate level who are already conducting or intending to conduct trials at all levels and more experienced advocates who want to enhance their method of preparation for trial with some innovative thinking. It is also popular with non-advocates who are involved in preparing cases for Crown Court trial.
- Be able to deal with issues that arise during the preparation and running of a criminal trial
- Be able to identify any preliminary applications that need to be made or opposed
- Have all necessary detail required for a trial preparation hearing
- Be able to ensure that your case is trial ready
- Improve your confidence and ability to conduct the trial itself
- Appreciate how using a TSP is a revelation that changes the manner in which you prepare for any case
- Benefit from a learning experience enhanced with personalised feedback and collaboration due to small class numbers
- Receive practical advice on how to apply the skills learnt during training from experienced trainers who are all former or current practitioners.
TBC: Please contact us for future course dates
- Legal Knowledge/Skills
- Advocacy Basic
Initial guidance from the trainer will take you through the structure of a TSP. You will then work in either the Prosecution or Defence team to create your respective TSP with on-going guidance from the trainer. A template format will be provided to structure the plan which should outline your team’s strategy; assess the strengths and weaknesses of your case and your opponent’s; set up the cross-examination of each witness; identify evidential issues, applications and submissions that you might make and anticipate those your opponents may make; considering all lines of enquiry and further preparation that may be needed to be fully prepared for trial. Both teams will then be brought together to constructively consider and analyse their respective plans with feedback from the trainer.
- Case Theory (including Logical Justifiable Points to Prove)
- Case Analysis (Identifying the Key Issues – to Agree or Dispute)
- Lines of Investigation and Preparation to be Undertaken
- Analysis of Opponent’s Evidence (Assessing Strengths and Weaknesses;
- Early Preparation for Effective Cross-Examination
- Supportive Facts to be Obtained/Challenges to be Made
- How to Extract Key Points for a Closing Speech
- What You Can Do Better.
Whilst there are no formal knowledge or practice pre-requisites, delegates with some experience of criminal law and case/trial preparation will derive the most benefit from the session.
You will have access to a case study in advance to acquaint yourself with the facts in readiness for the course. There is also 3 hours’ worth of Distance Learning available in the form of pre-coursework exercises. If you are not undertaking this element, there is still benefit from completing the exercises as they form the basis for discussion on the day.
Following the course, there is additional 3 hours’ worth of Distance Learning available in the form of post-coursework exercises. Once, even if you are not undertaking this element, there is still benefit from completing the exercises. In particular you may wish to take advantage of the Personal Development Plan exercise, designed to comply with the Solicitors’ Regulation Authority’s Continuing Professional Competency requirements.
By the end of the course, delegates will be able to:
- deal with issues that arise during the preparation and running of a criminal trial;
- identify any preliminary applications that need to be made or opposed;
- have all necessary detail required for a trial preparation hearing;
- ensure their case is trial ready; and
- improve their confidence and ability to conduct the trial itself.
A1 Act honestly and with integrity, in accordance with legal and regulatory requirements and the SRA Handbook and Code of Conduct
A2 Maintain the level of competence and legal knowledge needed to practise effectively, taking into account changes in their role and/or practice context and developments in the law
A3 Work within the limits of their competence and the supervision which they need
A4 Draw on a sufficient detailed knowledge and understanding of their field(s) of work and role in order to practise effectively
A5 Apply understanding, critical thinking and analysis to solve problems
B1 Obtain relevant facts
B2 Undertake legal research
B3 Develop and advise on relevant options, strategies and solutions
B5 Undertake effective spoken and written advocacy
B6 Negotiate solutions to clients’ issues
B7 Plan, manage and progress legal cases and transactions
C2 Establish and maintain effective and professional relations with clients
C3 Establish and maintain effective and professional relations with other people
D1 Initiate, plan, prioritise and manage work activities and projects to ensure that they are completed efficiently, on time and to an appropriate standard, both in relation to their own work and work that they lead or supervise.