Making an appearance in court can be a daunting experience. There is etiquette to follow, you have to prepare your appearance and you’re going to be under the careful watch of the jury, judges and everyone else in the courtroom. However, it doesn’t need to be such a daunting experience and there are many things you can do to prepare yourself for an inevitable court appearance.
Hiring the right lawyer
It doesn’t matter what the occasion is for attending court, but if you haven’t prepared a lawyer then it might already be too late. Fortunately, if you’ve just been told that you are being sued or something similar, then you have ample time to prepare a lawyer. Law is a huge and complicated subject which is why there are many different types of lawyer. Depending on your case, you’ll have to hire a lawyer that specialises in the type of law you are dealing with in order to get the best possible help.
Prepare a court reporter
A lot of people put heavy emphasis on the type of lawyer you hire. However, very few people will remind you that you also need to worry about hiring the correct court reporter. At the end of the day, a courtroom reporter is going to ensure that everything in court is recorded accurately and confidentially. In the past, courtroom reporters were provided by the court, but due to budget cuts they have suddenly disappeared from the courtroom and it’s now up to you to hire one to ensure that you have a full recording of whatever goes on inside the courtroom.
Let’s face it, we act differently when we’re under pressure or in an important situation. Being in a courtroom is no different, and you need to learn all about courtroom etiquette. For starters, make sure that you are well-dressed and that you are attending court in a suit or at least something smart. Make sure you arrive on time and that you are never late for a court appearance. Practice basic formalities such as not bringing food into the court or screaming out loud, and make sure you turn off your mobile phone! The last thing you want is for it to ring while you or someone else is speaking. When dealing with your opposition, maintain some respect so that it doesn’t tarnish your reputation in court.
It helps to bring someone along to the hearing if you need some moral support. It’s recommended that you don’t bring children unless absolutely necessary, but bringing friends for support is fine. Just ensure that they don’t speak up when it’s your turn to present your case because it could negatively affect your reputation in court and your friend might be asked to leave the courtroom.
Make sure you control your emotions when you are in court. It’s imperative that you try and maintain professionalism while you are inside the courtroom so that you don’t hurt your chances of winning your case. Remain polite, even to your opposition, and try to keep a straight face no matter what decisions are being made around you.