131 – John Romano – The Art of Trial Preparation

There are great episodes and there are John Romano episodes. This is not one you want to miss.

On this episode of Trial Lawyer Nation, Michael sits down with legendary trial lawyer John Romano as he shares wisdom acquired over five decades of law practice. John reveals valuable insights into the mindset of a winning trial attorney, practical preparation tips, the importance of  jury research, and even shares his pre-trial preparation checklist. Through personal anecdotes, John also addresses the fear frequently felt by young lawyers and offers practical advice for persevering.

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Featured Guest

Name: John Romano

About: John Romano is a founding partner of Romano Law Group, a personal injury law firm located in West Palm Beach, Florida. John has successfully represented clients in a wide range of personal injury cases, including auto accidents, wrongful death, medical malpractice, and has successfully litigated to a verdict nearly every type of civil and criminal case. He is a civil trial advocate board-certified by the Florida Bar and the National Board of Trial Advocacy, as well as the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys.

Company: Romano Law Group

Connect: LinkedIn

Episode Highlights 

[03:52] A marine’s leap into the legal world: John, a former marine, recounts his journey of finding his true calling as a trial lawyer.

[09:11] The vital role of mentors, seminars, and practical skills: John attributes his professional growth to the valuable lessons absorbed from seasoned lawyers and extensive workshops. He also delves into learning about the innovative use of jury research via mock trials and focus groups which honed his trial abilities.

[12:12] Debunking the myth that ‘it’s so tough to get trials’: Romano argues that trials are there, but that sometimes plaintiff lawyers look for ways to get out of trying a case. But he underscores that the client’s welfare should remain the overriding factor in all decisions. 

[15:33] Fostering hope in the face of legal challenges: John goes into the mental aspects of lawyering, particularly the interplay between fear and hope during trials. He advocates for embracing fear, transforming it into courage and action in the interest of clients. 

[23:30] Secrets in tackling a spectrum of cases and strategies: Romano shares insights from a variety of civil and criminal cases.

[29:08] The power of early preparation and preservation of evidence: John emphasizes the importance of proactive case preparation. He details the process, from the preservation of evidence to theme development, treating depositions as significant events, and the utility of written discovery. He also endorses early engagement with a trial consultant.

[33:18] Unpacking the pre-trial preparation checklist: John shares his pre-trial preparation checklist includes communication with defense counsel and going over deadlines, among other things.

[39:14] Leveraging facts, jury research, and persuasion: Romano shares his key strategies for successful case handling, underscoring the role of good facts, jury research, compelling opening statements, and effective persuasion techniques.

[44:29] Communicating effectively for impactful legal arguments: John explores the art of persuasion, emphasizing its role as a tool to help others understand and connect with one’s ideas rather than to force acceptance.

[47:34] The profound influence of mentors in the legal profession: Concluding with a poignant reflection on mentorship, Romano asserts its profound importance. Mentors, he says, offer more than just knowledge; they provide guidance, protection, and personal fulfillment, and can come from any walk of life.

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In this popular and award-winning podcast for trial lawyers, noteworthy author, sought-after speaker, and renowned trial lawyer, Michael Cowen explores critical topics distinctive to the legal profession with some of the biggest names in the industry – specifically focused on developing extremely efficient law practices, securing a competitive edge in the industry, and wildly excelling in the courtroom.

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