Family & Juvenile Law Section “Top 10’s”
Top Ten Things To Do To Keep Your Judge Listening
By: The Honorable Cindy Callahan
- DON’T READ AND/OR ANSWER EMAILS WHILE AT COUNSEL TABLE!!!!
- Exhibits in aid of argument are extremely helpful to a judge, especially in a complicated case, but good in any case.
- Be accurate in your time estimates. If you ask for ten minutes, take 10, not 25.
- A prepared witness is much more likely to be credited, and tends to move through the relevant testimony more quickly.
- Confine your comments to the facts of the case. Attacks on opposing counsel really don’t get you anywhere.
- Refrain from using a judge’s ruling the last time you were before him/her as general precedent.
- If you intend to use a computer during your court appearance, be sure you have silenced pop-up reminders! Also see No. 1, above.
- Simple but true: come to court with copies of exhibits. The court’s budget (money and time) doesn’t including copying your evidence.
- If you are going to be late for court, CALL AND SAY SO. And see No. 3, above, re: how long it will be till you arrive.
- One time well said is enough. Don’t repeat yourself.