GUIDELINES FOR JUDGES
APP. AD. III
NOTE TO JUDGES: YOUR JUDGING SHOULD BE BASED UPON COUNSEL'S SKILLS ONLY, WITHOUT CONSIDERATION OF WHICH SIDE SHOULD WIN ON THE MERITS.
All participants have had these guidelines available.
I. CONTENT & RESEARCH: Knowledge of the Record, Issues and Law (25 points)
1. Does counsel know and use relevant authority?
2. Does counsel have a thorough knowledge of the record? Is counsel able to direct you to important language?
3. Does counsel emphasize the important issues?
4. Does counsel argue the heart of the matter adequately and is he/she selective in discussing issues?
5. Does counsel employ reason and logic rather than just relying upon precedents?
II. ARGUMENT: Persuasiveness, Logic, Lucidness (25 points)
1. Are counsel's arguments clear and direct?
2. Is counsel's presentation well organized? Does he/she provide a brief overview at the beginning and leave the issues firmly fixed in the court's mind when he/she leaves? (Rebuttal included)
3. Is counsel creative in the use of arguments?
4. Is counsel convincing irrespective of the merits of the case?
III. PRESENTATION: Demeanor, Eye Contact, Use of Time, Projection (25 points)
1. Is counsel helpful to the court? Is he/she courteous rather than sarcastic or resentful?
2. Does counsel project an image of professional sincerity towards his/her client?
3. Does counsel maintain eye-contact with all judges? Does he/she refer excessively to notes or prepared text?
4. Is counsel relaxed rather than stiff and/or jittery?
5. Is counsel's voice clear and audible? Does counsel use proper pronunciation, grammar, and timely emphasis?
6. Does counsel have distracting mannerisms (i.e., use of hands, use of "ahs," "ers," etc.).
7. Did counsel use his/her time effectively? (i.e. too much on facts, too little on law). Did counsel run out of time? Did counsel respect the court when out of time?
IV. RESPONSE TO QUESTIONS: (25 points)
1. Is counsel responsive to question rather than evasive or repeatedly unable to give an answer?
2. Is counsel able to answer a question with authority, either theoretically or with case names?
3. Is counsel able to fit relevant questions into his/her overall analysis and presentation?
4. Is counsel able to continue his/her argument following a question?
5. Is counsel candid about weak points in his/her argument?