New Preliminary Jury Instruction in Illinois – 1.01

Here it is – and it’s good.

If you remember, 1.01 was just re-done a year or two ago, but they added to it again.

The gist of some of the additions-

1. Don’t google stuff. Seriously, no wikipedia, no facebook, no [insert currently relevant website here, twitter or whatever] (seriously, the instruction says “insert current examples”. Nothing like the “alter my pants as fashion dictates” approach to jury instructions. It works though – imagine an old instruction that said “Don’t go to altavista or Ask Jeeves. Stay away from the usenets. Don’t chat about it on ICQ.”

2. Seriously, don’t friggin google stuff. This is the gist of about 3 paragraphs.

3. If you do talk about this, google it or whatever, you screwed up and wasted everyones time. Oh, and you could be guilty of contempt of court. I love this part of it. It is the first one of these instructions I’ve seen that answers the “why not” question.

So now you’re officially on the cutting edge of Illinois trial practice – you have the jury instruction in front of you the day after it came out. Assuming it’s still February 1, 2011.

(Howard Zimmerle is a trial lawyer practicing in the Quad City area. He can be reached at 309-794-1660 or hzimmerle[at]mjwlaw.com)

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Filed under Illinois law, Juries, Trial Practice

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