It is well know that successful litigation attorneys are amazing storytellers. They are able to capture the jury's attention like a teacher reading Little Red Riding Hood to a classroom of Kindergarteners. Although many attorneys when they take their LSAT, finish Civil Procedure, and see the light at the end of the tunnel, envision being Atticus Finch in presenting their case to the jury, "To Kill A Mockingbird" -- The reality is that simply the charisma of Atticus Finch will not cut it in South Florida Courtrooms and for much of the state of Florida. We are now in the digital age! Adults are are eager to get their information without delay - instant gratification. They are used to making up abbreviations while texting (i.e. TY = Thank you, ttyl = talk to you later), using emojis instead of full sentences, and much more; simply because they want to get through it faster. Although the English major in all of us doesn't always agree with using all these abbreviations and emojis, in order to stay relevant with your jury, icons are a necessary part of any legal design today. Attorneys should communicate with their jurors in a way that the jurors are accustomed to and expect. It is another layer in presenting your case and being the good "Courtroom Litigator" attorney that all lawyers aspire to be.
For years, APVisuals had been using icons in its timeline design. For example, inserting an image of a needle when blood is drawn for labs, inserting an image of a hospital when admitted, using an image of a physician when a doctor performs a service or treatment, etc. Using icons allows the audience to readily see who was the main actor or action during a certain event on a timeline. Icons have allowed us to design timelines that may have had lengthy documents or explanations, to simple images that create succinct exhibits for jurors.
Icons keep the presentation, documents visually stimulating by keeping the message you are trying to get across brief. The color and image breaks up the sea of words that can sometimes bog down a timeline. It also gives jurors kind of a device to recall certain people or actions. Once they see a certain image such as a hospital, a red danger sign, etc. they will be more likely to recall in their memory the event or action that is being questioned. Again there are many reasons to use icons in timelines. Effective design = accuracy and comprehension.
Attorneys can also take advantage of the already accepted meaning of certain icons. For example a stop sign or a thumbs up. The use of these icons requires very little explanation to a juror. By simply placing a thumbs up a juror will associate the image with a good event. Placing a thumbs down will automatically make the juror think of a bad event.
Above you can see an example of a medical timeline in relation to a medical malpractice case. Not only did we use emoji/icons with the actual events, we also used photographs and the icon of the silhouette of a woman to illustrate the progression of the loss of limb. Of course, a custom design to meet the case's needs.
If you are in need of a timeline, APVisuals's legal graphic designers have over 30 years of combined experience in creating effective and compelling timelines for clients. We are readily available to discuss with you on how we can enhance you case with a custom designed timeline for your client's story. Contact us at 305-318.9570 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for further details. We look forward to working with you on your next case.