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How To Win in Court in Simple Terms

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The following information is from Jurisdictionary, one of the best and easiest to understand legal reference I have ever used. It was the first legal reference I had bought and to this day, I still go back to it now and then to remind myself what I need to do to win my case in court. The text below is from several PDF sources titled "How to Win", "Motions", and "Forms".

Jurisdictionary®

Winning lawsuits begins with knowing the rules.

Can you imagine winning at poker or baseball if you didn’t know the rules?

Of course not!

The same is true going to court.

And, the consequence of not understanding what’s going on in court is much more severe. The stakes are higher and potentially catastrophic.

On the other hand, if you know the rules and are a person who should win your case, you probably will win. That’s why we have the rules we have:

So the good guys can win!

Indeed, the rules are written for that purpose. Justice for all (who know and abide by the rules). The court system itself is established on these rules. Without them courts could not function. There must be rules.

Lawsuits are fights. See this now. Litigation is not a parlor game.

In the balance hang the lives and fortunes of both sides. If you don't know what weapons are at your disposal, you’re not prepared to fight.

No need to suffer loss from ignorance. The principles of civil law are easy to understand.

In fact, it’s quite a bit of fun using the official rules to force your opponents to follow them to-the-letter and obey the law. Live free! Learn the rules!

When I was just a 1st year law student, local circuit judge Harry Fogle (whose widow gave me his notes so I could write The Trial of Jesus offered free with all Jurisdictionary® tutorial orders) came to “preside” over some mock hearing exercises. We were there that day to learn how to make motions. When it came my turn I tentatively approached the bench where I encountered the demanding stare of this venerable old judge who asked in a somewhat gruff voice, “And what do you want?”

I replied, “I’d like to make a motion that the …” He didn’t let me finish.

“Well,” he demanded impatiently, “make your motion!”

“If it please the court,” I began again, only to be interrupted once more.

“Are you going to make your motion or not?”

“Well, your honor,” I stammered, “I’d like to move the court to …”

At this the kind but stern old gentleman leaned forward a bit and with a softened voice suggested, “Why don’t you move the court, Mr. Graves?”

The familiar lightning of instant awareness struck, and I immediately responded with a knowing smile, “I move the court to …”

I don’t remember what the motion was, but once I got to the point of moving the court, instead of trying to be polite and respectful and merely suggesting what I wanted to do or telling the court what I’d like to do and got the meat-and-potatoes of the matter and moved the court, Judge Fogle said not another word until I’d finished my motion and then declared, “Motion granted!”

The point of this exercise was for us to understand that motions are intended to move the court, to cause the court to act … not to beg it to act or to tell it how much we wish it would act. No. No. Motions move the court. They’re not disrespectful. They are efficient.

They tell the court

o what you want the judge to do,

o why you’re entitled as a matter of law,

o what citations to statute or case law justify the court’s action, and

o to move!

Remember this: Every judge is a public servant, paid for by taxes and duty-bound to follow and do what the law requires. He or she is not authorized to make up the rules as your case moves through the Courthouse. It’s always wise to be polite to the court, but unless you instruct the judge in the law and the facts and insist on your rights (rather than standing there with your hat in your hand, obsequiously staring at your shoes and begging the court for mercy) you’ll be missing the power that is yours to win your lawsuit. Make the judge obey the law!

Do it politely, if you can, but do it!

Here's how to get what you want.

Move the court.

Everything that happens in court results from motions.

Either one side or the other moves the court or the court may move itself. Every motion seeks to change the court's position. Motions force courts to decide issues. Motions require courts to move.

Once a court is moved, the court must act. The court has no option. It cannot ignore a motion. It must grant the motion or deny it ... and, very importantly, if you move the court to state on the public record why it granted or denied your motion, i.e., "by what authority" it acts, the court must do so. The judge does not have a choice. Judges must obey the law just like everyone else!

Use this power.

Move the court!

Don't expect any judge to act without a motion. Don't sit back and expect a judge to do what's right. Judges are humans, just like you. Don't wait. Don't hesitate.

Move the court.

This is how you win.

Don't wait for justice to come your way. Life just doesn't work that way. Anything worth having (and justice is certainly no exception) is worth working for. Move the court.

Move the court to do what's right and, if the court doesn't do what you believe justice and fair play demand, move the court to clearly state its reasons. Move the court to cite the law upon which it relies. Don't allow the court to make its own laws. Require the court to obey the rules and laws of the land just like everyone else must do in free societies. Force the court to honor the Rule of Law. Refuse to allow any judge to act

without clearly stating the law that justifies the judge's decisions.

Say, "I move the court to state by what authority it denies my motion."

Don't take no for an answer.

Fight for your rights.

Justice is secured by moving the court to grant justice. Justice is not secured by hoping. Justice is not secured by wishing. Justice is secured by moving judges to grant justice ... and by demanding that the court state its reasons for doing anything you believe is unjust or unfair.

Move the court to explain itself.

Move the court to take judicial notice of the rules and laws that control it.

Move the court to take judicial notice of commonly known facts about which reasonable persons cannot disagree.

Move the court to prevent the other side from violating the rules in any way whatsoever.

Finally, move the court to grant its judgment in your favor.

If the court denies your motions, move the court to tell you why ... on the record.

You can move your courts, and by moving them properly you improve justice for us all and secure liberty for future generations. It is perfectly proper to demand that courts act fairly to dispense justice. It is perfectly proper to require courts to answer you in writing. It makes good sense to do so. Require the court to state on the record by what authority it acts or refuses to act.

This is your power to win. Use it!

Move the court to open a window if the courtroom is too stuffy for you.

Move the court to explain on the record everything it does to restrict what you believe should be your free right to continue living without interference from others.

Move the court in any way you believe necessary to obtain justice, and make a record of every word that is said. It is your right to move the court. Do so!

Move the court until you get what you want.

Exercise your rights. Speak the truth. Make a record of every word.

Demand a successful outcome … on the record.

This is how you win your case!!

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YOU NEED THE PLAYBOOK!

That can only be done by going down to your courthouse and COPYING WINNING PLEADINGS IN SIMILAR CASES FROM COURT FILES IN YOUR JURISDICTION!

Knowing the court rules itself will not get you the win!

You need some good plays as well.

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I think both posts are correct here. One needs to know the rules and how a court functions before a playbook can be implemented. Once the rules are known however, a playbook is important because each case is different.

I am thinking that for those who are not facing a lawsuit right now (if you are facing one, it is even more imperative that you do this), now is the perfect time to sit down and learn the rules of civil procedure in your state. Take a day off of work and go to the county courthouses when you know civil claims are on the docket (you can ask any court clerk what the court calender is). Take an attorney out to lunch who is willing to teach you. The cost of the lunch will probably be very cheap for the information you will receive. When talking to the clerk, ask where you can find the rules of that county court. Read books on judicial procedure (you can probably get them via inter-library loan). Learn Learn Learn.

Oh, and another thing to take from this post. Judges like confident people who know what they want and can make their request as quickly, forcefully, and efficiently as possible. Again, this confidence comes from knowledge. I see it in Trueq who has taken the time and effort to learn the rules. Each case is so different that there is no one magic pill or instruction to make it go away. You have to always be learning.

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Yes, the state rules of civil procedure and the state rules of court are imperative to familiarize yourself with. Also the LOCAL RULES OF COURT & CIVIL PROCEDURE and NECESSITIES!

Our case was dismissed last year because the attorneys at MB screwed up on a LOCAL rule of court. Everything they did was somewhat correct according to the state rules of civil procedure, but they royally screwed up the local rules.

Many pro se litigants ought to use local rules and technicalities to their advantage.

Another poster recently got messed over via a local rule of court that he was unaware of. When it comes to motions of any type, these rules are of particular importance.

Some places decide the motion then give you a very narrow window to contest the decision. You have to set up a hearing before hand to even anticipate this...so learn the local rules!

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I CONCUR. READ THE LOCAL RULES. YES, I KNOW I AM YELLING.

I talked to a local attorney about my situation. He told me that I had 14 days to reply to something that the local rules only give seven. The State rules say 14, and the nearby court where he normally practices allow the 14, but my jurisdiction is different. Know the all the rules or loose the game.

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This is correct. The court in my county has different rules from any other court in the state. Most counties play by one set of rules, a few counties play by their own rules. Fortunately, the rules can usually be found on the internet.

Also, talk with the people who work at the courthouse. By law, they are forbidden to give you legal advice. However, they can tell you the rules, and they often know the local rules and customs of the court VERY well. They are an extremely valuable resource.

My strategy when dealing with court employees is to let them know I am a bit uninformed and very nervous about the whole thing. Guess what? Almost every non-lawyer, and some of the lawyers, are in the same boat. So, I go into extra polite mode, and ask them for their wisdom. It could be as simple as finding the bathroom, or as complicated as asking the procedures for scheduling a motion hearing. Strange as it may seem, but most public servants really do want to help people, and are extremely willing to do so when asked nicely.

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Good tutorial on motions. Only problem is in my court, they cost money! $20 filing fee per motion.

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