Perhaps no individual plaintiff’s lawyer can claim to have had a larger impact on the trial bar than Don Keenan. Not only has Keenan been involved in hundreds of successful jury trials and handled cases in 47 states, but with his book, The Reptile (co-authored with jury consultant, David Ball), Reptile organization (now the Edge and Keenan Trial Institute), Keenan has mentored thousands of trial lawyers in his techniques and revolutionized the way plaintiff attorneys approach trials. Keenan’s approaches have become so widespread and successful that organizations of defense attorneys routinely hold seminars to teach defense lawyers how to combat Keenan’s systems and the Reptile strategies have become the subjects of routine defense motions and numerous reported judicial opinions.
In this episode, we have a wide-ranging discussion with Keenan in which Keenan talks about his use of foreseeability, focus groups, statistics, power words, repetition, and lighthouse phrases to win jury trials. Keenan explains the original philosophy behind the Reptile approach and how that has evolved into something different—and better—over the years. Keenan talks about how changes brought on by Covid have impacted focus group results and changed his approach to jury trials.