When U.S. citizens enter a jury box to hear a case about alleged discrimination and/or harassment, they carry with them a plethora of personal and vicarious experiences that may color their perceptions of the case at hand.
Expert witnesses could be much more helpful to counsel if they were involved earlier in the case; not engaging with experts sooner could leave their reports vulnerable to attack by the opposing party.
Subject matter experts can help counsel not only retool the general approach to the case within the expert’s area of study, but also rebuttal reports.
Our findings strongly indicate the usefulness of political affiliation and political beliefs as proxy variables for employment attitudes.
Jurors are likely to believe that companies retaliate against those who report harassment and discrimination.
One should expect a reasonably high level of juror sympathy for employees who testify that they did not report the discrimination or harassment for fear of retaliation.
Among certain groups—most notably Republicans—the idea of a movement gone too far can gain traction.
Conducting jury research early in a case can:
- Drive the retention of subject matter experts to explain certain aspects of the case
- Highlight the need for testimony from lay witnesses, not previously considered central to developing the facts
- Posit a theory of the case that makes great sense itself as the theme for trial
Consider certain broad groups as more likely than others to be plaintiff jurors:
- Those 45 and older for age discrimination cases; those under 45 for harassment cases (of any type)
- Those who have personally experienced discrimination or harassment or are close to someone who did
Download the full report of our findings and strategic recommendations.