What was a precedent-setting hybrid jury trial in 2020 has now become an appeal hinged on arguments that the part in-person, part Zoom format denied the losing litigant the right to the counsel of its choice.

The appeal concerns the COVID-19 innovation of an August 2020 jury trial, where one side’s lawyers argued in a socially distanced high school auditorium turned into a courtroom, and the other side’s lead counsel dialed into the trial through Zoom.