Jackson Walker partner Chip Babcock was quoted in a June 4, 2014, Law360 article on the topic of unorthodox tips for trial lawyers. The article, “6 Trial Tips Your Law School Professors Left Out,” provides six unconventional tips from seasoned trial lawyers that they believe can help attorneys win over the hearts and minds of jurors.
When conducting a cross-examination, attorneys are advised to never ask the ‘”why question” – as in, “Why did you do that?”‘ out of caution that the unknown response could lead to more bad than good. However, as Mr. Babcock states, oftentimes the why question begs to be asked, and jurors might unconsciously penalize an attorney who leaves it on the table.
“I’m not scared of the why question…Sometimes you get an answer that’s really bad for the other side,” Mr. Babcock said. “Jurors like and respect the lawyers that ask the questions that they want to ask. So if you have 12 people sitting there asking why, and I’m not asking that question, in their eyes I’m not being as effective as I could be.”
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Mr. Babcock has more than 25 years’ experience representing a variety of clients in commercial litigation, including intellectual property disputes, as well as in the field of media and communications law. In 2010, Mr. Babcock was selected as one of Texas Lawyer‘s “25 Greatest Texas Lawyers of the Past Quarter-Century,” and is ranked as a top First Amendment attorney, a top Commercial Litigation attorney, and a top Trial Lawyer in the prestigious Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business directory. Mr. Babcock has been awarded the status of “Super Lawyer” by Thomson Reuters every year since its inception in 2003 and has also been listed by D Magazine as one of the “Best Lawyers in Dallas,” by H Texas Magazine as one of the “Top Lawyers in Houston,” and by Texas Lawyer as one of Texas’ “Go To” lawyers. He is AV-rated by Martindale–Hubbell and is featured in the Commercial Litigation chapter of Who’s Who Legal: Texas. He was named as a “Best in Civil Litigation Defense” attorney by Super Lawyers: Corporate Counsel Edition. Mr. Babcock received his A.B. from Brown University and his J.D. from Boston University.