Episode

116 – Michael Bonamarte – What Does It Take to Win a $20 Million Verdict?

Michael Bonamarte wasn’t always set on being a trial lawyer. In college, he started out on a pre-med track, eventually discovering a passion for the law. Now, he runs a successful firm with 20 years under his belt — and a $20 million verdict. What does it take to reach this level of success?

Throughout his career, Michael soaked up knowledge from the greats in his industry. From mentors and partners to books and other educational tools, Michael made sure he was learning everything he could so that he could go to bat for his clients. Because of this passion and drive, Michael won a plethora of large cases. 

One of these large cases received a successful $20 million verdict. This multimillion-dollar case covered a difficult birthing complication, where the baby, AJ, was diagnosed with fetal growth restriction at 40 weeks. Significant changes in the fetal heart rate strips were not brought to the attending doctor’s attention, and ultimately, AJ suffered brain damage. Although he should live a regular life expectancy, AJ’s neurological function is limited and he will likely need custodial care for the rest of his life.

Due to the technicalities of the case, Michael knew he needed support from great experts. With the help of both law firm partners and medical experts, Michael was able to solidify the win. The medical experts could explain the points that matter and simplify complex terms for the jury. The defense, who argued that fetal growth restriction was caused by a genetic growth issue, didn’t have the necessary experts to strengthen their argument, which contributed to Michael and his team’s big win. 

Throughout his career, Michael has had plenty of multimillion-dollar wins. Now, as a managing partner of his firm, Michael is helping other lawyers find that same success. By investing in the firm, making himself accessible to younger lawyers, and sharing all of his insight and knowledge, Michael is helping shape the next generation of lawyers winning million-dollar verdicts.

In episode 116, Michael Cowen is in conversation with Michael Bonamarte, Managing Partner at Levin & Perconti, to get all of the details on the $20 million verdict. Michael walks through the big case, from the opening statement and jury selection to the closing arguments and ultimate win. On this insightful episode of Trial Lawyer Nation, Michael also discusses what it’s like running a law firm, how he built up his skills early in his career, and the best ways to bounce back from a loss.    

Featured Guest

Name: Michael Bonamarte

About: Michael Bonamarte, IV is a nationally recognized trial attorney who has achieved outstanding results in a number of high-profile nursing home, wrongful death, birth injury, and medical malpractice cases. He is committed to protecting and vindicating the rights of people who have been injured due to systemic flaws and corporations choosing profits over people. Michael is currently a Managing Partner at Levin & Perconti law firm in Chicago, Illinois.

Company: Levin & Perconti

Connect: Email | 312-516-1129

Key Points

Top takeaways from this episode 

  • You have to be a sponge to develop your skills as a trial lawyer. Michael Bonamarte has a passion for representing people who have been wronged. But passion doesn’t always mean you have the skills to succeed. So how do you develop your skills? According to Michael, you have to be a sponge and soak up all of the insight from other lawyers, mentors, and resources in your field.   
  • A strong argument requires the right experts. Especially if you’re working on a technical case, you need the right experts to guide you through complex terms and concepts. Additionally, experts serve as credible sources to support your argument during trial.  
  • Give the case your all. No matter how great of a lawyer you are, you won’t win every case. In order to bounce back from the losses, it’s important that you give every case your all. When you know that you did everything you could for a client, a loss is somewhat easier to bear. 

Episode Highlights 

[02:23] The beginning of an outstanding law career: Michael Bonamarte talks about his journey in the field of law and his work at Levin & Perconti.

[06:23] Developing trial skills: Michael shares how he went from a pre-med path in college to becoming a successful trial lawyer. He also discusses the people who have influenced his law career and how he stays educated.

[08:45] The $20 million verdict: Michael gets into the details of a difficult birthing case, sharing the complications of the birth and why it was such a big case. 

[18:44] The defense of the case: According to Michael, there was an overwhelming number of expert witnesses for the case. But the defense, who argued that fetal growth restriction was caused by a genetic growth issue in this case, didn’t have the necessary experts to strengthen their argument.

[22:33] Michael’s strategy for winning the case: Because the case was extremely technical, Michael attributes much of his success to his partners and medical experts. These experts could simplify things for the jury, explain the relevant case points, and ensure that all information was accurate. 

[27:05] The jury selection: Michael walks through the jury selection process specific to the case, how he set up a foundation of mutual respect, and how he exposed bias through a lighthearted example (deep dish or thin crust pizza?). 

[36:06] The opening statement: Michael’s partner, Margaret, did the opening statement, and they chose to start off with the base premise of a healthy birth. They presented what should happen during a healthy birth, and then they presented plan B — what happens when that first scenario isn’t possible.  

[44:47] Why presentation matters: Michael talks about a lung cancer case with a 40-year smoker and how he presented questions and information to win the case. He also shares the story of the shocking cross-examination during the birthing case and how he successfully delivered the closing argument.

[53:04] Getting the jury to fight for you: During the closing argument, Michael tapped into his emotions and personal experience of having a daughter the same age as AJ, the baby in the birth defect trial. Michael connected with the jury — especially the parents who may empathize with AJ’s family.

[58:49] What it takes to be a managing lawyer: As a managing lawyer, Michael often comes in at the end of the case after others have worked up the case. In order to get great workup done by others, Michael focuses on the bigger picture, utilizes the unique skills of the firm’s lawyers, and makes himself accessible to younger lawyers.   

[1:05:58] Bouncing back after a loss: For Michael, it’s easier to come back from a loss knowing that you did everything possible for your client. As long as you put everything out there and give it your best shot, you’ll feel more positive about the situation — even if the outcome isn’t what you wanted.

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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.

Produced and Sponsored by LawPods.

115 – Malorie Peacock – How to Get Compelling Testimony From Treating Doctors

Getting credible testimony from treating doctors can make or break your case. In this episode, Michael and Malorie are sharing their strategies to get powerful testimony from treating doctors, work through common challenges, and help build your case.

While the personal knowledge of the treating physician establishes significantly more credibility than a hired expert, it’s imperative the doctor communicates well and speaks in a way the jury can understand — without all of the medical jargon.

Remember: treating doctors aren’t professional testifiers. The lawyer needs to ensure that the treating doctor is prepared to give efficient, compelling testimony. You’re the guide who’s questions will lead the doctor along the trail of your strategy, and avoid getting stuck in the weeds of mundane details. 

Malorie’s strategies to guide the story include magic words and visuals. Magic words or questions ensure you get what you need from the witness and end up with valuable testimony. Visuals (like diagrams, animations, or demonstrations) can help the jury visualize the story — as long as your visuals are relevant to your trial strategy. To wrap everything up, Malorie suggests you leave the jury with the major takeaway from your witness…just make sure it connects to the next part of your case.

Tune in to episode 115 as Michael and Malorie discuss strategies and best practices for working with treating doctors, the do’s and don’ts of getting valuable testimony, preparing the witness, and utilizing their testimony to build a compelling story for the jury.

 

Featured Guest

Name: Malorie J. Peacock

About: Malorie J. Peacock is a Partner at Cowen Rodriguez Peacock. She was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas and received her J.D. from the University of Houston Law Center. During her time with Cowen Rodriguez Peacock, Malorie has worked on numerous commercial vehicle, trucking, and wrongful death cases. Malorie brings close attention to detail, commitment to finding safety issues and areas of neglect, continued utilization of technology and cutting-edge visuals in cases, along with a sincere passion to help those who have been hurt, to each and every case.

Company: Cowen Rodriguez Peacock 

Connect: LinkedIn  

Key Points

Top takeaways from this episode 

  • Testimony from treating doctors can be crucial for a win. A treating doctor can testify from a place of personal knowledge, showing the jury what happened from a medical perspective. They have more credibility than someone you might hire, and because of their longer history with the client, they’re harder to cross-examine.
  • Bringing in treating doctors has its share of challenges. Although treating doctors can be critical for a case, there are often challenges when bringing them in to testify. Doctors speak their own language; they often use medical jargon that the average person won’t understand. So, if you want to work through these challenges, you need to make sure your treating doctor is using colloquial language and is a great communicator.
  • You should think about your case from a storytelling perspective. It can be easy for a treating doctor to get into every detail of the medical procedure, condition, or patient visit. As a lawyer, you want to guide the treating doctor and make sure they stay on track, only sharing details that are relevant to your case strategy. Be careful not to be leading or argumentative, but build your story with key components and questions that make the testimony understandable.

Episode Highlights 

[01:59] Events for attorneys: Michael Cowen talks about upcoming events for lawyers put on by top organizations including the Academy of Truck Accident Attorneys and Trial Lawyers University. 

[03:07] Getting testimony from treating doctors: Apart from making sure you have a clear appellate record, your doctor’s testimony is a critical component of the story you’re telling to the jury. However, there are some challenges with getting treating doctors to give coherent, clear testimony.

[09:19] Should witnesses be live or on video? Malorie Peacock explains the benefits of having a live witness compared to someone on video. She also shares why a live witness can be a bigger risk. 

[10:59] Compelling treating doctor direct examinations: Malorie talks about how lawyers can introduce witnesses in an efficient way — and why it’s important to build trust with the doctors so their testimonial is straight to the point. 

[16:12] Dealing with questioning: Malorie and Michael discuss how to deal with accusatory questions that frame the witness as being in some sort of collusion with the lawyer. 

[19:38] Magic words and questions: You don’t have to use magic words or phrases in trial, however, Malorie shares how they could help you and why it never hurts to use them. 

[24:37] Showing a doctor’s work without going overboard: You want to prove a doctor’s credibility and show their work. But you don’t want to go overboard and have them share the entire chart. Malorie and Michael share their strategies for finding the middle ground while presenting the necessary information. 

[29:23] Degeneration — the dreaded word: Lawyers, especially those in Texas, don’t have to run away from the concept of degeneration. A preexisting condition is something that the jury can accept and move forward from; just because someone had a broken arm before doesn’t mean they can’t break their other arm. 

[33:11] Using visuals with treating doctors: Malorie and Michael share their tips for using visuals in cases. They explain that visuals are crucial in clarifying a doctor’s point and helping the jury visually connect to the story — but you don’t want to use visuals that aren’t relevant to your trial strategy. 

[42:14] The end of a doctor’s testimony: To wrap everything up, you should ask your magic word questions and leave the jury with a takeaway that connects to the next part of your case (which will often be non-economic damages).   

Connect with Trial Lawyer Nation

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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.

Produced and Sponsored by LawPods.

114 – Brandon Thompson – Winning Medical Malpractice Cases

Anuj Thapa wanted the American dream. A college student from Nepal who came to the United States to pursue mechanical engineering, Anuj had big dreams of getting his degree and becoming the breadwinner for his family members at home in Nepal. 

But his aspirations were destroyed by a leg injury that led to a painful condition called compartment syndrome. Due to the neglect of his doctors, the damage that Anuj suffered after his surgery left him disabled.

Luckily for Anuj, he got one of the most esteemed medical malpractice lawyers in the country to try his case, Ciresi Conlin’s Brandon E. Thompson. With 17 years of experience in the medical malpractice law arena, he was able to win Anuj $111 million in damages. The defense’s argument? They claimed that Anuj — a 19-year-old in the U.S. on a student visa — was lying about when and where he developed compartment syndrome.

“That was a gift to us that they framed the case that way because it allowed us, throughout the case, to paint this as a credibility contest,” Brandon said. “Find me another case where you’ve got somebody who truly has had their American dream torn away from them in the way that his was.”

For Brandon, presenting cases to the jury with empathy is the key to success — and he’s had a lot of it. Tune in to this episode of Trial Lawyer Nation as host Michael Cowen talks with Brandon about all things medical malpractice: from the weaknesses of liability arguments to the secrets of getting a jury on your side.

Featured Guest

Name: Brandon E. Thompson

About: Brandon Thompson’s entire legal career has been dedicated to representing individuals and families who have suffered from the negligence of medical professionals. There is no greater professional honor for Brandon than being asked to help people when they are facing the darkest times of their lives.

Brandon is one of the foremost trial lawyers of his generation. He has won numerous multi-million jury trials — including some of the largest-ever jury verdicts in the State of Minnesota for clients harmed by serious medical malpractice — and has negotiated many millions of dollars of settlements for his clients. He is a member of a number of elite national and international trial organizations, and in 2018 was invited to be the youngest-ever Fellow of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers, the most prestigious organization of trial lawyers in the world.

Brandon’s work ethic and compassion were a product of his blue-collar upbringing; his grandfather was a mechanic, his dad was an electrician at the Ford plant, and he was the first person in his family to go to college. The father of three children, including a young daughter with extraordinary medical needs, he empathizes with his clients in a way few lawyers truly can.

Company: Ciresi Conlin, LLP

Connect: Email

Key Points

Top takeaways from this episode 

  • Look beyond liability. When choosing which cases to defend, one of the biggest mistakes lawyers can make is choosing a claim based on liability claims alone. Liability is not always as strong as it seems, so the first criterion should always be the seriousness of the injury or damages.
  • Differentiate your case. One of the best things medical malpractice lawyers can do to win over a jury is to differentiate their case and show how it is an outlier. 
  • Avoid credibility arguments. In the case Brandon won for Nepali student Anuj Thapa, the hospital’s biggest mistake was using credibility as their primary defense. In this case, it was deeply improbable that someone like Anuj, who risked everything to pursue his “American dream,” would lie about his injury.

Episode Highlights 

[01:43] Meet the expert: Brandon E. Thompson talks about how he went from insurance defense at a corporate firm — a job he hated — to one of the country’s foremost personal injury lawyers.

[04:42] Humble beginnings: Brandon’s upbringing in a blue-collar family influenced his decision to help people through law.

[06:06] Right place, right time: When Brandon decided it was time for a job change, he was given an opportunity that would shape the rest of his career: a job with one of the nation’s best medical malpractice lawyers.

[10:59] Picking the right cases: In a field that has no shortage of potential cases, how do medical malpractice lawyers choose which ones are worth defending?

[15:17] The chance for success: When so much of a case’s success rests on the jury — and luck — here’s what medical malpractice lawyers can do to boost their chances of victory. 

[17:19] Differentiate the case: One of the strongest things lawyers can do to strengthen their case is to differentiate the situation from the norm and show how it is an outlier. Brandon offers examples of how to do this successfully.

[21:27] The $100 million case: Brandon tells the devastating story of his client Anuj Thapa — a Nepali college student who was the victim of a botched surgery — and how Brandon won his client $111 million in damages.

[32:53] What went wrong: Brandon explains how he framed — and later won — the case against the hospital and who was to blame for the permanent ailments Anuj was left with after his surgery.

[38:04] What drove the verdict: The lucky combination of Anuj’s strong story with a good jury helped Brandon win the case.

[45:49] Making the ask: How do medical malpractice lawyers decide how much in compensation to ask a jury for? Brandon explains why asking for a specific number may not always be the best choice.

[51:45] Rejecting the reptile strategy: David Ball and Don Keenan’s 2009 book “Reptile” presents a strategy that uses fear and anger to get jurors to sympathize with a plaintiff — but the approach may not work for everyone.

Connect with Trial Lawyer Nation

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☑️ Subscribe to Trial Lawyer Nation on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or YouTube.

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.

Produced and Sponsored by LawPods.

113 – Malorie Peacock – Michael and Malorie’s Latest Trial

On a good day, a personal injury trial can feel like an uphill battle. Now, add a small inhospitable venue, a less-than-sympathetic client, and a slew of video witnesses into the mix. That’s exactly where Michael and Malorie found themselves recently trying a commercial vehicle case. In this episode of the Trial Lawyer Nation, they’re here to reflect on the trial and discuss the unique challenges they faced, the strategies they employed, and actionable lessons you can take into your next trial. 

To set the stage, the case involved an oilfield worker rear-ended on the highway. He suffered significant structural injuries, returned to work for a year, and ultimately had a hip replacement and additional therapies.

While liability was never in doubt, damages is where Michael and Malorie faced an uphill battle. The first challenge was that the client’s medical records said he had degenerative disc disease from childhood. How do you establish that his injuries are attributable to the motor vehicle wreck?

To complicate matters, the client returned to work, performing the same responsibilities as before the accident, only seeking treatment sporadically. To keep things interesting, the judge allowed the admission of evidence of the client’s cocaine use around the time of his treatment. These are just a few of the issues that threatened to derail our damages claims. 

Join us on this episode to hear the details of the case, including our future-focused approach, witnesses and experts we called and why, the unique way we presented the medical and non-economic damages witnesses, and much more on this new episode of Trial Lawyer Nation featuring Malorie Peacock.

Featured Guest

Name: Malorie Peacock

About: Malorie J. Peacock is a Partner at Cowen Rodriguez Peacock. She was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, and received her J.D. from the University of Houston Law Center. During her time with Cowen Rodriguez Peacock, Malorie has worked on numerous commercial vehicle, trucking, and wrongful death cases. Malorie brings close attention to detail, commitment to finding safety issues and areas of neglect, continued utilization of technology, and cutting-edge visuals in cases, along with a sincere passion for helping those who have been hurt in every case.

Company: Cowen Rodriguez Peacock 

Connect: LinkedIn  

Key Points

Top takeaways from this episode 

  • You don’t need to prove your whole case with one witness. A witness to establish damages does not have to know everything about the client’s life or know them before and after the crash and be able to compare. Instead, it has to be someone involved. The key is to string together tidbits of information into a coherent story.
  • Before using video depositions during a trial, you need to know the critical predicate questions in your jurisdiction to lay the foundation to use that either as a demonstrative or to get it admitted into evidence because it makes a giant difference. You also want to make sure your videos are reasonably short and engaging. None of the videos in this case exceeded 25 minutes.
  • Your client may not be likable, but you must protect and fight for them. Some clients are tough to love, but if you take their case, you want to protect them as best you can from the jury selection process and throughout the trial by looking out for obvious sentiments that could go against your client.

Episode Highlights 

[01:45] The case many lawyers didn’t want to touch (Including us): Malorie Peacock provides the background for the commercial vehicle accident case.

[02:33] The challenges with the case: Michael lays out the challenges and how it looked like an impossible case to win.

[04:41] Surmounting roadblocks: Despite the many challenges, Malorie knew that the fighting chance was in identifying and telling the most important stories.

[07:24] Witnesses make a great difference: Michael commends the choice and organization of witnesses called and how their testimonies help tie the evidence together and paint the full picture.

[15:50] The smart way to use video depositions: Malorie and Michael discuss how they used video depositions, carefully editing the testimony to go straight to the point, and keeping it brief. 

[22:43] Use your expert witnesses as brushes to paint the true picture: Ultimately, you’re telling a story during trial. Sometimes you need other expert witnesses to help convey the story.

[28:10] Keep notes: How the team transformed live notes into exhibits.

[31:33] Why Malorie initially didn’t want to take the case: Malorie shares why the team almost did not take the case and the importance of letting the merits of the case lead decisions.

[36:41] With an unsympathetic client, jury selection is crucial: Why the team chose to bring in jury consultants, Michael’s admission that this voir dire was different from anything he has done before, and his favorite question, “Have you ever loved somebody that you didn’t like?”

[44:20] Trials can change people: Malorie recounts her personal experience with the client and his efforts during the process to reconnect with his family and be a better person.

[52:21] Settle when the number is right: At what point does it make sense to settle during trial? Michael and Malorie share their experience.

Connect with Trial Lawyer Nation

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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.

Produced and Sponsored by LawPods.

112 – Krystal Cantu-Cuate – The Healing Journey: Facing Traumas and Truths

On this special episode of Trial Lawyer Nation, Michael welcomes his favorite client of all time, Krystal Cantu-Cuate. Like many clients, Michael was introduced to Krystal under difficult circumstances. Krystal was traveling a car that experienced a tire blowout. The blowout resulted in a tragic accident, and the amputation of Kyrstal’s right arm. As is often the case, this was only the beginning of a long and emotional journey.

When she first saw her family members gathered in the hospital waiting room, they were crying and expressing fear and apprehension about her future. In that moment, Krystal decided she was going to be strong for them and defy their fears and worries.

With the driving force to be strong for her family and take control of her situation, Krystal began working tirelessly to achieve and overcome. Within a month of her accident, Krystal was back in the gym resuming her CrossFit training

Behind that incredible tenacity the world saw, a much darker story was playing out. Krystal wasn’t okay. The trauma was silently wearing on her. She admits she was in denial, repressing difficult thoughts, emotions, and feelings about the accident. And, because she was lacking the tools and knowledge to process the trauma she went through, inner struggle, pain, and repressed emotions became her normal. As litigation wore on, and maintaining the Superwoman exterior became more difficult, Krystal’s mental health challenges began to consume her.

While the journey has more bumps than Krystal was willing to admit to herself in the early years, this story has a happy ending. With Michael’s help, Krystal admitted to herself that is was okay not to be okay, made her mental health a priority, and sought out the support she needed to continue her healing journey. 

Join us on this new episode of Trial Lawyer Nation for this emotional story of trauma, bravery, hard truths, and healing with guest Krystal Cantu-Cuate, an ex-CrossFit adaptive athlete and keynote speaker on mental health.

Featured Guest

Name: Krystal Cantu-Cuate

About: Krystal Cantu-Cuate is an ex-CrossFit adaptive athlete, keynote speaker on mental health, part-time bridal stylist, mother, and wife. After a tragic car accident in 2013 that resulted in the amputation of her right arm, Krystal went on to live her life in the face of adversity. Becoming one of the first competitive CrossFit adaptive athletes, Krystal traveled all over the US competing — and inspiring thousands while doing so. In 2016, she gave birth to her son, Joaquin, and left her competitive career. In 2021, Krystal was faced with her biggest challenge yet: mental health. After a traumatic experience with crippling anxiety, Krystal was faced with challenges that called for uncomfortable conversations. Krystal is now a keynote speaker on mental health and its importance. She continues using her own personal experiences to help others who may be struggling.

Connect: LinkedIn | Instagram | Facebook 

Key Points

Top takeaways from this episode 

  • It’s okay to ask for help. Asking for help doesn’t make you weak — it actually shows how strong you are. Whether you have a case in litigation or you’re fighting inner battles, it’s important to seek help. Lawyers and experts in the field can guide you through the litigation process and ease your worries. Close friends and family can give you the support needed to work through personal struggles. No matter your circumstance, always remember that you don’t have to go through it alone.   
  • A healing journey requires honesty and bravery. Healing is never easy, and it’s not a linear process. You have your ups, your downs, and everything in between. But what will get you through is honesty and bravery. You must be honest with yourself about where you are and what you need to start healing. Once you understand this, you need the courage to take on whatever challenge comes your way. 
  • Trust yourself. Nobody knows you better than yourself, although it’s easy to forget sometimes. In her darkest days, Krystal’s husband, Daniel, reminded her, “No matter what’s happening in your head right now, don’t forget — don’t forget who you are… Just trust yourself.” Trusting yourself and your strength can help keep you out of a downward spiral.  

Episode Highlights 

[02:06] The tragic story that changed everything: Krystal Cantu-Cuate shares the story of her car accident in 2013 that resulted in the amputation of her arm (and the beginning of her work with Michael Cowen). 

[04:48] The litigation process: Krystal recounts what the litigation process was like, the harsh questions she faced in the deposition room, and what it was like dealing with foreign language and legalese documents. 

[07:39] Knowing your strengths: Despite the severity of the situation, Krystal trusted in Michael, continued her CrossFit training as a form of therapy, and stuck to her strengths. What drove her to take on this superwoman persona?

[13:45] Dealing with the difficulties of the case: Krystal opens up about her fears of facing the memories during the witness preparation.    

[16:18] Using CrossFit to push through: Krystal couldn’t fathom someone telling her she couldn’t do something — so she continued her CrossFit training. She doesn’t regret doing CrossFit because it kept her body healthy and her mind preoccupied.

[20:07] Struggling behind closed doors: Despite her fierce positivity, Krystal lost a lot of confidence in herself and faced a ton of anxiety after the accident.

[22:28] Finding a breakthrough: Krystal shares what finally led her to a breakthrough after a traumatic anxiety spiral. From suicidal thoughts to medication, Krystal faced a turning point that led to her healing journey. 

[33:15] Using therapy in your healing journey: Michael and Krystal discuss their experiences seeing a therapist and why you have to be courageous to get honest. They also dive into the stigma of therapy and their thoughts on removing the stigma. 

[35:31] The truth about intrusive thoughts: Krystal talks about naming her suicidal thoughts, telling her family about them, and why suicidal and intrusive thoughts are more common than you’d think. 

[41:43] Not staying quiet: Instead of holding in her thoughts, feelings, and pain, Krystal speaks up. Whether it’s to her husband or therapist, Krystal shares what she’s feeling — despite how uncomfortable it can be. 

[44:39] Receiving support: Krystal shares how her husband, Daniel, was an essential part of her healing. 

[47:45] Krystal’s speaking initiatives: How is Krystal using her speaking to help others going through a similar situation? She’s sharing all of the details. 

[51:08] Leading through tough situations: Krystal shares advice for attorneys on how to companion people through their difficult journeys.

Connect with Trial Lawyer Nation

☑️ Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram & LinkedIn.

☑️ Subscribe to Trial Lawyer Nation on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or YouTube.

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.

Produced and Sponsored by LawPods.