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Ilya E. Lerma, left, and Charles “Chuck” Bennett, right, trial consultants with Trial Structure. Courtesy photos

After the trial, a juror stands in a hallway outside the courtroom leaning against a wall. She and the rest of her jury had just ordered a trucking company, and unknowingly their insurance company, to pay millions and millions of dollars for the death of a young woman. The largest jury verdict ever in this courtroom. The defense lawyer, who the insurance company paid to represent this trucking company, walks up in his blue suit with his collar unbuttoned and a red tie undone around his neck and asks, “Why so much? That doesn’t seem right.” The juror steps forward away from the wall, looks the defense lawyer in the eyes, and says, “What we say in our verdict says more about who we are and what we value than what your client did to that young woman.”

What is the right size of a verdict? How much is the life of a woman worth? Or the brain of a young boy who will never again speak or read? The spine of a father who can no longer walk and lives in constant pain?

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