Trial Lawyers Beware: The Mock Jury Has Been Patented

Mock Jury Patent

To put everyone on notice: The method of conducting a mock trial has been patented.  The patent, No. 6,607,389, claims priority to a 2001 provisional filing date.  The novel portion of the claim appears to be that both the stricken and not-stricken members of the jury pool hear the case.  Claim 1 reads as follows: 

1. A method of conducting a mock trial exercise . . . comprising:

  • assembling an initial pool of potential mock jurors;
  • questioning members of the initial pool . . .;
  • striking members of the initial pool for cause . . .;
  • permitting the attorney[s]to make a number of peremptory strikes of members of the initial pool . . .;
  • assembling a probable jury comprising members of the initial pool not struck;
  • assembling a stricken jury comprising members of the initial pool struck;
  • presenting [at least a summary of the case] to both the probable jury and the stricken jury.

The patent was awarded to Dr. Louis Genevie, founder of Litigation Strategies, a New York jury research and consulting firm.  Thanks to Dan Ravicher at PubPat for showing me this one. 

About Dennis Crouch

Law Professor at the University of Missouri School of Law. Co-director of the Center for Intellectual Property and Entrepreneurship.