In this video, you will get answers to these questions:
Check out a related video: What is the Court of Equity
Should my court arguments be emotional or logical? That’s the question I’m going to answer today. I’m Aaron Hall, an attorney in Minnesota, and I’d like to tell you a story. I once met one of the greatest public speakers and litigators I’ve ever known. He was an attorney at Dorsey and Whitney, a big prestigious law firm in Minnesota. His name is Roger Magnuson. He argued some of the biggest, most prominent cases.
And he one time told me that when you are preparing to go to court to argue, you may be wondering, “Do I speak to the heart and the emotions and the energy? And what you hear from politicians and salespeople and you see on the movies and some of the greatest orators and best arguers on TV movies. When you see attorneys in court.” Do you take that approach or do you focus on the logic like Spock from Star Trek? Do you follow methodically a logical approach speaking to the brain, using reasoning? Perhaps being stoic, methodically going point by point by point. Which is the better approach? In other words, should you speak to the judge’s heart or the judge’s head?
Well, what Roger Magnuson told me and I have found is certainly true, you might have guessed it, both. You can’t ignore either and here’s why. The attorney, or the judge who was an attorney typically, prior to being a judge, needs to see all the logical reasoning and components there, but the judge is also human. And the judge is trying to figure out, are you the predator or the victim? In other words, are you the bad guy or the good guy? Are you the wolf or the sheep? The judge is trying to quickly assess, “Do I want to help you or not?” And here’s why.
I have another video on the Court of Equity, but without going into detail on that video and it’s fantastic, I’ll link to it in the description below on What is the Court of Equity? But high level it’s this, in the United States, we have a conversion of two court systems that existed in Europe. We have the Court of Law and the Court of Equity. The Court of Law applies the laws, the Court of Equity considers justice, fairness and what is right. And if you can’t get resolution or justice in a Court of Law, you had the right to go to a Court of Equity.
In the United States, we’ve merged those into a single court system. We don’t have two separate judges, but what that means is judges in the United States always have two different hats on. One is the Court of Law, one is the Court of Equity. You might think of it this way. One is the logical application of the law. The other is using the heart to determine, “Am I doing what is right here? Am I helping the party who needs to be helped? Who needs to be protected?”
So whenever you are preparing for court, after you’ve prepared your presentation, think, “Did I speak to both the heart and the mind of the judge when putting this presentation together?” In other words, is there enough story, narrative, emotion, and those human elements to help the judge understand what is right? And then is there also enough logic and reasoning and organized thinking? Step-by-step application of the law to the facts of your situation so that the judge and the judge’s mind can track with you and say, “Yeah, you should win both from a logical standpoint as well as from a justice or equity standpoint.”
So there you have it. When preparing for court, be prepared to speak to the heart and the mind of the judge. For more information on this topic and other topics like it, feel free to see the description below. If you want to get similar videos like this, you’re welcome to subscribe to this channel, and please see the disclaimer below as well, which basically says, “Look, I do these educational videos, but don’t rely on them without consulting with an attorney.” Thanks for joining me today. I’m Aaron Hall, an attorney representing business owners in Minneapolis, Minnesota.