Jump to content

sat in on a motion docket today


Recommended Posts

Today I went and sat in on a motion docket, just to get a feel for the judge, his courtroom and technique.

There were a ten attorney's and four others (including myself) A handful of defaults on credit card cases were handed out. I did get to see a pro se defending on a foreclosure MSJ and it was not a pretty sight, they guy was unprepared and kept getting lost in his argument. The judge handled it very well and I walked out of that courtroom thinking that this judge is very fair and he even tried to help the pro se out a little, but it was no where near presenting issues of material facts.

Lessons learned:

*be on time

*be organized & prepared

*deep breathing, relax, take your time speaking

*DO NOT interrupt the judge

*be familiar with the procedures

*DO NOT be hostile towards opposing counsel

*have a plan, an organized plan!

*the judge appears to be very fair and will listen to whatever he needs to.

I am glad I sat in. My boss isn't super thrilled, but hey I'm back at work now and I'll be a good employee the rest of the day 8] I swear!

Anyways, I have two ongoing cc cases, so I think I'll probably spend a bit of time in that courtroom, so it was nice to get a little familiarity.

Thought I'd share here because none of my friends care to hear ANY more about these cases haha.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sì, Sì!! I agree!!

Meraviglioso job with your research!! I would also say you should be sure to add your notes to your 3-ring binder of information you have collected. (you have a binder, right? ;) )

I have gleaned many, many helpful hints also from observing court. One thing I learned is it is like being in Kindergarden. Wait your turn; Be polite; Don't talk when someone else is talking. That thought really made me laugh, since I think some of these lawyers act like the playground bully!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Very good! If you're court posts dockets online, you might want to see if the attorney or law firm in your case is scheduled to appear any time soon. That way, you could sit in and watch them at work. It helps to know the enemy. :twisted:

They don't post the docket online, but there are two motion dockets per month at set times. The attorney's were not there today (i paid close attention to each and every one that was there and took notes on behavior etc) Both of the lawfirms opposing me are located 5-6 hours driving distance to this local courthouse, so I am under the impression that they typically have a "rent a lawyer" at the pretrial hearings.

One of the attorneys present was filling in for other lawfirms on some of the defaults, and my initial impression of this guy was the term "JACK*SS" so that probably makes sense.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sì, Sì!! I agree!!

Meraviglioso job with your research!! I would also say you should be sure to add your notes to your 3-ring binder of information you have collected. (you have a binder, right? ;) )

I have gleaned many, many helpful hints also from observing court. One thing I learned is it is like being in Kindergarden. Wait your turn; Be polite; Don't talk when someone else is talking. That thought really made me laugh, since I think some of these lawyers act like the playground bully!

I absolutely do have a couple of three ring binders, one for each case and then one for ideas and thoughts etc. At work right now, but tonight I plan on spending some time pondering my notes and getting them into some sort of order, then I will add them to those precious binders :)

It is like kindergarten!!:ROFLMAO2:

I was really nervous at first (even though it wasn't my trial!!!) but I have more confidence now, and I can start preparing mentally.

*I LOVED debate team in high school and in college! This will come in handy.

* I have performed my entire life (singing and dancing) so I know how to handle Pre-show nerves etc. and these hearings are a "show"

*Dress to impress

Now if I could just keep up with procedure etc.

I am thinking tht I will look into law school after this.:)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Very good! If you're court posts dockets online, you might want to see if the attorney or law firm in your case is scheduled to appear any time soon. That way, you could sit in and watch them at work. It helps to know the enemy. :twisted:

I did that. I learned that one of the attorneys who I was going to deal with was a little weasel. In front of the judge, he was a very polite fly on the wall. With me, it was intimidation, making sure that I "knew" that he was going to get enough evidence to win.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just remember, when you sit at the table with opposing counsel, you never speak directly to him, you speak only to the court.

Yes, I had read that somewhere on this site. That poor pro se who butchered his case, kept directing things to the opposing counsel, glaring at him etc. The opposing attorney was very polite and didn't interrupt the defendant while hanging himself.....

While I sure wish I could sit in on an actual credit card case, but I think overall, I learned enough to keep me comfortable for my future hearings.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lessons learned:

*be on time

*be organized & prepared

*deep breathing, relax, take your time speaking

*DO NOT interrupt the judge

*be familiar with the procedures

*DO NOT be hostile towards opposing counsel

*have a plan, an organized plan!

*the judge appears to be very fair and will listen to whatever he needs to.

*DO NOT interrupt the judge

Really important. You want to take cues from the Judge. Find out where she is going and what, if anything, you need to press. I was in court a while ago and someone appeared by phone. Wouldn't shut up. The Judge kept trying to interrupt to ask a question but nothing doing. The Judge was mad, turned to the clerk and said "prepare an order. No more phone appearances in this case."

* One to add: know when to sit down

I have seen more people snatch defeat from the jaws of victory than I can count. Sometimes, you know you are winning, because the Judge issues a tentative ruling or just tells you at the beginning of the hearing. If so, ask the Judge if there is anything she wants you to address. If not, sit down, even if you prepared the best argument and it took you 2 days to do so.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

* One to add: know when to sit down

I have seen more people snatch defeat from the jaws of victory than I can count. Sometimes, you know you are winning, because the Judge issues a tentative ruling or just tells you at the beginning of the hearing. If so, ask the Judge if there is anything she wants you to address. If not, sit down, even if you prepared the best argument and it took you 2 days to do so.

This one is a tough one I admit. I had a motion filed and we were there for oral arguments. I had spent several days and numerous hours preparing my side and arguments. I was locked, loaded, and ready.

After the other side was finished, there was no way the Judge was not ruling in my favor. He all but ruled against the other side. His body language also told me he was not impressed with the arguments. Finally the questions he asked the other side, including follow up questions, made it obvious what the ruling would be.

It took everything I had in me to tell the Judge I had nothing to add that was not addressed in my brief. Followed by unless Your Honor has specific questions for me or needs clarification on my position in this matter.

I won. All that time and work and did not get to argue any of it. Very tough to do, but great advice from CALAWYER, in my opinion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

*DO NOT interrupt the judge

Really important. You want to take cues from the Judge. Find out where she is going and what, if anything, you need to press. I was in court a while ago and someone appeared by phone. Wouldn't shut up. The Judge kept trying to interrupt to ask a question but nothing doing. The Judge was mad, turned to the clerk and said "prepare an order. No more phone appearances in this case."

* One to add: know when to sit down

I have seen more people snatch defeat from the jaws of victory than I can count. Sometimes, you know you are winning, because the Judge issues a tentative ruling or just tells you at the beginning of the hearing. If so, ask the Judge if there is anything she wants you to address. If not, sit down, even if you prepared the best argument and it took you 2 days to do so.

Thank you for adding that point. The pro se defendant that I watched did not have his argument ready, so his argument was moot basically, but he just kept on dragging it out, the judge would say "anything more?" and the defendant would whip something out of his a**. The argument took about 30 minutes longer then it really needed to. During this time the defendant *admitted to signing the mortgage *admitted that he defaulted months before the creditor was saying and *admitted that he had breached the contract.

It was like watching a :trainwreck:

I don't think sitting down any sooner would have helped him oppose the MSJ, but it sure would not have hurt either!

Thank you for your tip! You guys are such a blessing!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This one is a tough one I admit. I had a motion filed and we were there for oral arguments. I had spent several days and numerous hours preparing my side and arguments. I was locked, loaded, and ready.

After the other side was finished, there was no way the Judge was not ruling in my favor. He all but ruled against the other side. His body language also told me he was not impressed with the arguments. Finally the questions he asked the other side, including follow up questions, made it obvious what the ruling would be.

It took everything I had in me to tell the Judge I had nothing to add that was not addressed in my brief. Followed by unless Your Honor has specific questions for me or needs clarification on my position in this matter.

I won. All that time and work and did not get to argue any of it. Very tough to do, but great advice from CALAWYER, in my opinion.

well put, along with CALAWYER's post.

i need to perfect this as its somewhat new to me

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sitting in on motions is a GREAT thing to do! You learn SO MUCH from the experience. I would add to that list above for things to do when you're going to court:

* dress nicely! You don't need a $1000 suit, but slacks and a button-up shirt (ironed) goes a long way. I saw a judge chastise someone for wearing a tank top to court.

* have extra copies of your paperwork and filings.

* check the day before your court date to see if there have been any new filings in your case. Check for any surprise filings.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.