As we slowly come out of the pandemic, albeit in fits and starts, juror attitudes have understandably shifted in these difficult and trying times. It is inevitable that among your jurors there will be those who are recently unemployed, some for the first time in their work-lives, along with others who have lost savings, homes, opportunities, even careers.
This has corporate defendants obviously concerned, for if corporations have often fared poorly in jurors’ eyes, many are doing even worse now. However, this is hardly the time for plaintiff’s counsel to cry “Huzzah,” for along with the public’s disdain for corporate greed and malfeasance, comes jurors’ disapproval of any case that smacks of the frivolous or the not “truly madly deeply” justified. Especially if plaintiff’s win could mean a cut in jobs for employees.
At least some of the jurors in any given panel understand the consequence of large awards. Don’t forget that among today’s unemployed are many who were in the white-collar strata of the workforce, and that these unemployed are able to educate their less-informed fellow jurors on the realities of what happens to employees, their jobs, wages and benefits, when corporations are hit with huge verdicts.
Whether representing plaintiff or defendant, keep in mind the current composition of your jury pool and current juror attitudes. This will go far in helping you win your case.