Evidence and Experts

Co-sponsored by the State Bar of Arizona Trial Practice Section

This program track may qualify for up to 12.0 hours MCLE, 10.0 of which may be Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Litigation Specialization and 1.0 is Ethics. Attendees are invited to enjoy a complimentary hot breakfast buffet Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, from 7:30 am to 8:15 am.

The Rules of Evidence are evolving and it is imperative for lawyers to keep on top of the updates and understand how they can affect rulings in court.   Join members of the AZ Supreme Court’s Advisory Committee on the Rules of Evidence as they guide you through the rules and their application. Experts are becoming more important in all aspects of litigation.  Too often, they are ineffectively utilized. A poorly prepared or chosen expert can torpedo a good case.  The track will provide tips and strategies from some of the best practitioners in Arizona on all aspects of utilizing an expert in your case.  Day two will provide an advanced review of the topic of experts.  Day three will review the lessons learned from last year’s top 10 verdicts, recent case law, rules updates, and the latest in effective in-person and social media marketing.

TRACK CHAIRS: James J. D. Campbell, Biaggi Kroese & Campbell PLLC; Patricia Lee Refo, Snell & Wilmer LLP; and Judge Sara J. Agne, Maricopa County Superior Court

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8:15 am -
12:30 pm

Evidence Law Update

This session is a “must see” for any civil litigator. Members of the AZ Supreme Court’s Advisory Committee on the Rules of Evidence will discuss this year’s developments in evidence law. Panelists will discuss changes to the AZ and Federal Rules of Evidence, and the most recent significant cases addressing important evidence issues. Judges and lawyers begin the day with a discussion of noteworthy cases relating to evidentiary issues and recent rule changes. The second part of the morning keeps you on your toes with a lively interactive presentation providing courtroom scenarios, allowing the audience to “sustain” or “overrule” electronically when an objection is lodged.

FACULTY: Patricia Lee Refo, Snell & Wilmer LLP; Judge Sara J. Agne, Maricopa County Superior Court; Judge D. Douglas Metcalf, Pima County Superior Court; Milton W. Hathaway, Jr., Murphy, Schmitt, Hathaway, Wilson & Becke, P.L.L.C.; Randy Papetti, Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP


8:15 am -
12:30 pm

Experts: An Advanced Examination of the Effective Use and Cross Examination of Experts in Personal Injury Cases

  • The Dos and Don’ts of Experts: Wendi Sorensen of Burch and Cracchiolo will discuss the care and feeding of experts. She will provide practical advice tips to make sure your expert is prepared to effectively support your case.
  • Medical and Damage Experts: How do I find a pediatric orthopedist? A nurse that specializes in cardiac rehab? James Campbell will discuss finding and retaining valuable medical experts to fit your case. Moreover, he will discuss effective cross examination and experts in medical negligence and personal injury cases. Finally, Jim will review use of experts to support or refute damages in a personal injury case.
  • Financial And Biomechanical Experts: Scott Dosek will discuss the use of financial and other experts often needed in personal injury cases.
  • Rules of The Road for Experts: Scott Palumbo will review the nuts and bolts of the Arizona Revised Statutes and Arizona Rules of Civil Procedure in regards to experts so that you don’t fall into unnecessary traps for the unwary.
  • Live Demonstration: David Shugart and Robert Boatman will demonstrate the direct and cross of a live medical expert and take questions from the audience.

FACULTY: Wendi Sorensen, Burch and Cracchiolo; Scott Dosek, The Dosek Law Firm; Scott Palumbo, Palumbo Wolfe, and Palumbo; David Shugart, Beale, Micheaels, Slack, & Shugart; Robert Boatman, Gallagher & Kennedy PA


8:15 am -
12:30 pm

A Potpourri of Necessary Personal Injury Information

  • Lessons From the Top Ten Verdicts of Arizona:  Venessa Bragg will share lessons learned from the lawyers that obtained recent top verdicts in Arizona and share the valuable lessons they took away from these hard-fought cases. 
  • Experts and Federal Law:  Judge Rosemary Marquez will discuss federal rules and presentation of experts in federal cases. 
  • Case Law Update:  Kurt Kroese will give a rapid fire summary of the relevant personal injury cases from the last year. 
  • Civil Rules Update:  Do you know the new rule about subpoenas?  How about discovery before a disclosure?  Fast Case? Judge Greg Sakall will bring us up to speed on the newest rules.
  • Effective Marketing in the Modern Age:  Are you marketing more and getting less in return? Marketing guru Larry Bodine will discuss that the solution is two fold: 1) Improve your in-person marketing by making quality contacts at social functions, easily connecting with people at networking events, and getting people to ask for your business card; 2) Improve your online marketing by blogging to generate new business, navigating social media successfully, and avoiding mistakes in your online presence.

FACULTY: Venessa Bragg, Elardo Bragg & Rossi PC; Judge Rosemary Marquez, United States District Court of Arizona; Judge Greg Sakall, Pima County Superior Court; Kurt Kroese, Biaggi, Kroese & Campbell; Larry Bodine, Senior Legal Marketing Strategist, LawLytics


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