“I have witnessed law school graduates commit ‘faux pas’ of gargantuan proportion.”– Judge Ralph King Anderson, Jr. Florence, S.C. 1997
Faux pas – noun. An embarrassing or tactless act or remark in a social situation. Synonymous for mistake.
As soon-to-be graduates, and therefore soon to be attorneys, we do not want to commit “faux pas” when we begin our professional careers. Although it is not realistic for law students to emerge from law school as experts in the legal process, it is important we enter the legal field with the essential knowledge of what it takes to actually try a case. This WILL be expected of us. Many of us will secure, or already have secured, a post-graduation position in an area of law that will require us to go to trial, Workers Compensation hearings, mediations, or arbitrations. It is inevitable.
So You’re Going to Try Your First Case (4th Edition) by E. Warren Moise is an incredibly useful resource for current law students or recent graduates who need to prepare for a position that will have them in the courtroom. This book will have new attorneys feeling confident in their ability to try a case as well as in their preparation for said case being more than adequate.
This book is an easy, enjoyable read. At 276 pages, Moise condenses the most essential information regarding going to federal or state trials, mediations, or arbitrations in a way the reader will feel as if they are having a personal conversation with him. It is easy to understand what he is explaining, and his sense of humor keeps readers refreshed and interested in the material.
Moise hits on many topics that come into play in the litigation process, such as basics about the South Carolina judicial system, written and unwritten myths and rules about the courtroom, case strategy, primary evidence rules, trial rosters, steps in a jury trial, pretrial preparation, opening statements and closing arguments, direct and cross-examinations of witnesses, hearsay made easy (who doesn’t need this?), typical trial motions, how to try a mediation or arbitration, universal forms and checklists you can use to better yourself as an attorney, and much more. He even shares with readers his own secrets to be as successful as he has been. After picking up this book, readers will feel as though they have taken a much needed class on the trial process.
If you have reservations about trusting this resource, don’t. Moise has over 25 years of experience as an attorney in South Carolina, during which he was named one of the best lawyers in America and one of the best lawyers of Charleston. He has also served as an adjunct professor at the University of South Carolina School of Law and the Charleston School of law in Evidence and Trial Advocacy. Along with this book, he has authored six others. He also has had nine legal journal publications and five regularly published newspaper and magazine columns. He is a certified mediator and arbitrator, and he has taught countless legal seminars. Moise is one of the most knowledgeable out there, especially when it comes to the state of South Carolina. He is now a practicing member at Grimball & Cabaniss, LLC in Charleston. Obviously, you are in good hands with this book in your hands!
If you are interested in checking out this essential and convenient resource, you can find it in our very own library on shelf 41B.
Written by Abby Doshier
Class of 2019