Mr. Ochrach has extensive trial experience and an unparalleled record of victories. He has won 37 of 40 trials, or 92%. On average, these have been 2-3 week long trials, and his longest trial lasted almost 2 months. His trial and arbitration experience includes many different types of cases, including:
- Contract Disputes
- Business Fraud
- Disputes between partners, shareholders and members of LLCs
- Purchase and Sale Disputes involving businesses and real estate
- Breach of Fiduciary Duties
- Financial Elder Abuse
- Non-disclosure of property defects
- Lease Disputes
- Ownership Disputes
- Adverse Possession
- Insurance coverage disputes
- Trade Secrets
Mr. Ochrach has litigated and prevailed on behalf of plaintiffs and defendants in sophisticated business disputes in federal and state courts throughout California and in a wide array of arbitration forums. Trials have become rare in the era of expensive litigation; yet, Mr. Ochrach has tried 40 cases – and he has won 37 of those cases.
Litigation is really a two-part process. The first part is the pleadings and discovery stage, which we generally refer to as litigation. All litigation attorneys handle these areas of the case, though their skill levels vary across the spectrum. This stage involves drafting the complaint or response to the complaint and fighting attacks on the complaint. Discovery involves written questions to the other party and requesting, analyzing and organizing documents from the other side of the case. Some cases are won on summary judgment, and others are resolved through settlement.
The second stage of litigation is trial. Relatively few lawyers have very much experience trying cases, since somewhere around 95% of all cases are settled before trial. Trial work requires an entirely different skill set from general litigation. Many very smart lawyers who’ve studied at the elite law schools have little to no experience trying cases. Moreover, many brilliant attorneys who have off-the-charts IQs do not have the special talents needed to be successful in front of a jury at trial. That’s why lawyers who haven’t been able to settle their cases often refer their cases to a skilled trial lawyer to take over the case and try it.
Trial Attorney – Trial Lawyer
The trial stage of a case is the most difficult and requires a special skill set most attorneys simply don’t have. Trial lawyers need to be incredibly organized and sticklers for details. These attributes are necessary because cross-examination is the most crucial part of trying cases, and only the most organized and efficient lawyers will be able to effectively impeach the adverse witnesses. Cross-examination demands thinking ahead five steps, similar to a chess game. Effective cross-examination walks the witness into traps that expose inconsistencies and outright lies. If the lawyer just jumps into the key questions without first building the foundation of questions that highlights and boxes in the damaging testimony, the cross-examination will fall flat. A good trial lawyer will let the witness dig a very deep hole of his false story before springing the key evidence or testimony that proves the lies.
Thus, trial work is as much art as it is the science of the law. Great trial attorneys have the artistry and intelligence, as well as an unyielding work ethic.
But there’s more. The great trial lawyers are fantastic story tellers, and the relate to people instantly and well. Voir dire is the first stage of trial. It’s the part of trial where the lawyers ask the jurors questions to determine whether they can be impartial. The best trial lawyers use this phase of trial to build a relationship with the jurors, to lower the jurors’ natural distrust of the lawyers, and to establish credibility with the jury. An excellent trial lawyer will use void dire to sway the jury to lean his way before the jury ever hears a single witness.
Finally, trial attorneys must be honest with their juries. Don’t overstate what the evidence will show; in fact, understate the significant evidence. This allows the jury to be a little surprised and more convinced when they hear and see the really good evidence. Also, by the end of the trial, the jury will have decided which attorney they trust more. The attorney who built this credibility with the jury will be the one to whom the jury looks to answer the difficult questions of the case.