Week 7: The Mock Trial Prompt Unveiled
Week 7: The Mock Trial Prompt Unveiled
Joseph Tracy, Florida State University, Orlando Office
This week, the Orlando summer associates went to see a jury selection for a criminal trial. It was fascinating to get to be in the courtroom watching real lawyers make decisions which could change the outcome of a high stakes case. We got to meet with the judge in chambers and go to lunch with her too, which was an unforgettable experience. She gave us so much great insight into how lawyers and judges operate in the courtroom. At the end of the week, the mock competition prompt was unveiled and we had a virtual at home chocolate making class–what a great start to the weekend!
Julie Potts, University of Alabama, Birmingham Office
On Monday, I attended the criminal hearing that had been rescheduled from last week. I had never been to a hearing in the Birmingham courthouse before, and I was excited to watch the procedure. Partner Jimmy Walsh and I arrived in the courtroom for a general meeting of all the cases the judge had pending for that day. After holding initial hearings with several defendants, the judge started moving through the cases that had been settled. It was so interesting to see the different charges and settlement agreements that the cases involved. On Friday, the summer associates finally got our mock trial problem. I was so excited to get the materials after looking forward to the trial all summer! My trial partner Graham Marcus and I plan to meet virtually next week to start assigning parts and setting up practice times.
Adam Poe, Stetson University, Tampa Office
On Thursday I had the opportunity to attend lunch with Bud Kirk, one of the founders of the firm. At lunch, Bud shared some amazing stories and strategies he’s developed over his career. It was amazing to be able to hear his stories and gain insight from such a renowned attorney. He also asked everyone at lunch go around and introduce themselves. For Bud to go out of his way to get to know those who work at the firm speaks volumes to his character and the RumbergerKirk culture. It was a privilege to be in his company and learn some tips from one of the best.
Harris Blum, University of Miami, Miami Office
Last week brought out my inner competitor as I spent much time working on my motion for the summer associate writing competition. We were tasked with writing a motion in limine to exclude the opposing party’s expert, a car mechanic. So although I’m not really a car person, I spent a lot of time trying to learn about how the engine and transmission of a Toyota Prius work. We have one more day before we have to submit our motions – time for the finishing touches. In addition to focusing on the mock trial and the writing competition, I also had my fair share of assignments. I finished responding to a motion for summary judgment for Josh Lerner and helped Victor Sanabria and Steve Smith with an appeal.
Elizabeth Pearce, Florida State University, Tallahassee Office
What I love about working at RumbergerKirk is the variety of work we receive as summer associates. My days are always filled with researching, discussing, or writing about, very different legal issues. One morning I may be working on a very specific education law question, and by the afternoon, I could be working on an issue involving direct disposal licensing at funeral homes (yes, this actually happened!). This week was no different. I did research for my mentor Kayla Platt Rady regarding worker’s compensation retaliation. I actually asked to help write a motion for summary judgement because I became really interested in the issues surrounding this area of the law. I’m excited to get started on that after I turn in my Daubert motion for the writing competition.
Graham Marcus, Stetson University, Orlando Office
On Wednesday I was scheduled to give a case review during the attorney luncheon. In the massive boardroom. On advanced appellate topics. Did I mention in front of all the partners? There were so many attorneys they actually had to bring in more chairs. Just my luck! But as it turns out, I survived. And even more, I was told that I did a great job! My topic primarily consisted of an in-depth explanation of the new summary judgment standard promulgated by the Florida Supreme Court. Not only did that experience provide me with an opportunity to practice speaking in front of a crowd, but I also became the resident expert on the new standard as well, which I might add is super helpful in the field of law.
Andres Chinchilla, University of Miami, Miami Office
This past week I gave my presentation during the Miami Office Attorney Luncheon. This meant I was tasked with choosing a new case or relevant topic to discuss with the attorneys. For my presentation, I chose to review what kind of conduct constitutes waiver of right to arbitration. I researched a wide variety of cases in Florida where the court ruled that a defendant or plaintiff waived their right. Luckily, I had done some research on this subject in the past for an extensive memorandum I had written for a partner, so it did not take away too much time from my usual work. I enjoyed the process and it seemed to go really well!
Meghan Kennedy, University of Florida, Orlando Office
On Wednesday, we had the attorney luncheon. One of our other summer associates, Graham Marcus, presented for the associate case review. Graham did a fantastic job explaining Florida’s new summary judgment standard. Managing partner, Frank Sheppard, gave the partner presentation. I have to say this was one of the coolest things I have witnessed this summer at RumbergerKirk. Frank discussed a complex case he currently is handling with another partner, Candy Messersmith. I was able to witness over twenty sharp attorneys slinging back and forth their thoughts and suggestions on the matter. It was exemplary of how beneficial being back in-person in the office really can be.