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On Jan. 26, 2020, I conducted the conclusion of a bench trial in an entirely virtual environment. The trial, a contractual dispute, began as a normal in-person proceeding prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. After the scope of the pandemic became evident, the parties agreed to conclude the trial over video conference. There was much to be learned from the experience with regard to the differences between in-person and virtual trials, be they civil or criminal, and how to best conduct them. This article shares some of these lessons I’ve learned through this virtual trial.

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