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Influencing the Jury Using and Objecting to Demonstrative Exhibits

Developing a Visual Strategy for Trial, Recognizing Misleading or Inaccurate Exhibits, Proposed Amendments to FRE 611

Recording of a 90-minute CLE video webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Tuesday, July 11, 2023

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE webinar will instruct counsel in current best practices for using and objecting to demonstrative exhibits in depositions and at trial. The program will review the necessary foundations for allowing both traditional media and technology-created visuals to be sent out with the jury and when they can be substantive evidence. The panel will discuss concerns about proposed changes to Federal Rule of Evidence 611 that could make it more difficult to use demonstrative aids and exhibits.


Lawyers throw away an important opportunity to influence the jury if they do not offer their own demonstrative exhibits and object to misleading or inaccurate exhibits offered by their opponents. Jurors routinely create their own diagrams, charts, lists, etc. to visually organize and understand what they believe they heard and saw in the courtroom.

Creating both an affirmative and defensive "visual strategy" for trial is as important as picking the theme for trial and requires planning and the proper foundation. Demonstrative exhibits are powerful tools that can be inaccurate or misleading--accidentally or intentionally. Too much, and the jury can be overwhelmed.

The issue of misleading and inaccurate demonstrative exhibits and visual aids has fueled proposed amendments to Federal Rule of Evidence 6ll that could curtail their use or at least heighten the hurdles to using them.

Listen as this panel of trial veterans offers counsel a thorough understanding of the use of demonstrative evidence and the necessary evidentiary foundations, outlines how to recognize and object to improper exhibits, and discusses the issues under FRE 611.



  1. Purposes of demonstrative evidence/aids
    1. Using demonstratives in depositions
    2. Using demonstratives at trial
  2. Foundations for demonstrative evidence
    1. Document excerpts
    2. Computer
    3. Day-in-the-life video
    4. Video/animation
    5. Experiments/demonstrations
    6. Models
  3. Objections
    1. Objection strategies
    2. Adopting opponent's exhibits
    3. Relevance, probative value
    4. Changes circumstances/not substantially similar
  4. Federal Rule of Evidence 611
    1. Current practice
    2. Proposed amendments


The panel will discuss these and other pivotal issues:

  • What is the difference between an exhibit and visual aid?
  • Are demonstratives presumed acceptable unless objected to?
  • In what ways can demonstrative exhibits be misleading and what are best strategies for objecting?
  • What happens if an exhibit used in depositions becomes inaccurate by the time of trial?


Miller, Colin
Professor Colin Miller

Professor of Law
University of South Carolina School of Law

Professor Miller is the creator and Blog Editor of EvidenceProf Blog, which addresses recent developments in...  |  Read More

Watkins, Justin
Justin Watkins

Langdon & Emison

Throughout his legal career Mr. Watkins has obtained substantial results for his clients, both in the Missouri State...  |  Read More

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