Updated: Dec 16, 2019
10 Simple Tips to help you prepare for your Court Hearing. Arrive at court calm and prepared.
Preparation, Preparation, Preparation. This is by far the most important tip. When I was training as a Solicitor, in advocacy, preparation was the most important key element. I believe that this is even more key when you represent yourself. More information about this to come in another article as I am keeping this simple.
Clear the Whole day in your diary. It can be a long day and you won’t know how long you’re likely to be at court. Make sure you have childcare arrangements in place for the day as well as clearing your diary of any other appointments, even if your appointment time is 10 am in the morning.
Get an early night the day before your Court Hearing. Plenty of sleep will help you feel clear-headed and focused for the day.
Come to court with an open mind. Be ready to negotiate and be willing to make some compromises to enable a settlement to be reached.
Bring snacks. It may sound silly, but it’ll help keep your energy levels up during the day. Good choices are nuts, seeds, fruit and chocolate.
Get clear on what exactly you and your ex (or court opponent) are each proposing for settlement. in your “offer letters” and what your “bottom line” would be to reach an agreement. This is an important element in preparation. Many clients really do go to court without any specific idea what they want.
Come wanting to reach a settlement. Bring an open positive attitude, if you don't then this can affect the chances of reaching a settlement. You can still do this even though you are specific about what you want.
Be a good time keeper. Leave plenty of time to get to the court to ensure you can arrive calm and composed. Prepare your travel route and time.
Bring notebook and pen and RELEVANT court documents. to jot down questions for your legal team, record important points you want to remember and record your own notes if you are representing yourself
Dress smartly and comfortably. Be respectful to the court. Avoid trying to dress in a manner to get sympathy form the judge.