Human beings are built to make initial judgments about others. These first impressions are influenced by several factors. People tend to be influenced by their first impression of another. Moreover, it is difficult to overcome a negative first impression. One can employ skills which can increase the likelihood of a more favorable first impression, everything from clothing style to posture can create a better first impression.
You need to dress appropriately for your court case. This means that you need to dress neatly in clean and ironed clothes. You should dress conservatively. Ideally, men should wear long dress pants, and women should wear a dress or skirt or long dress pants with a blouse. It is very important that women not dress in low cut blouses, short skirts or dresses, or clothing that is too tight.
You need to be on time for court, which generally means appearing early so that you may find the courtroom, and know when and how your case will be called by the court. You should be respectful and serious. Once in the courtroom, it is appropriate to stand when the judge enters the courtroom, and then sit with he/she is seated. You should stand when you speak to the judge, unless the judge or your attorney directs otherwise. You should call the judge “Your Honor.” It is important to speak clearly and loud enough to be heard by the court.
You must be on your best manners in the courthouse and in the courtroom. Never interrupt anyone, especially the judge Do not use slang or curse words, unless you are quoting someone else. Do not argue with the judge, court staff, or the opposing attorney. Do not eat or drink anything, and never chew gum.
Body language is important. People observe your outward appearance, stance, actions, and body language. You need to treat those at the courthouse nicely. Having a positive association with the court staff can be beneficial.
If you move forward with your case for spite, or act in a spiteful manner against the other party, you will likely end up hurting your case in the end. In addition to increased litigation expenses, you may suffer personally. It is in your best interest to attempt to reach a reasonable compromise so that you can move forward.
You need to be sure that you discuss your case with your attorney. You should ask your attorney any questions you have about your case. It is important to be honest with your attorney. If you are not honest with your attorney, the “blindsiding” of your attorney will negatively affect your case. Given that cases are very fact specific, it is important that you communicate with your attorney.
It is important that you listen to your attorney as your advisor. Your lawyer understands the law and litigation process. You are foreign to the legal system, while your attorney is an expert in the field of law. Though you are in control of your case, you need to pay attention to your lawyer’s advice.
Most cases settle before trial. Success in a case often means attaining a desirable settlement. Judges often require that the parties attempt to settle the matter. Compromise is often necessary to reach an amicable settlement—this means that neither party gets everything that they wanted.
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