Dedicated Jacksonville Divorce Laywer On Your Side
Family law cases are emotionally trying, costly, confusing, complicated, and much more. Regardless of whether the divorce is tense or mutually respective, you both will find yourselves in need of a family law attorney to assist you.
The area of family law is highly complex, and the more assets or minor children involved, the more complicated things become. To protect your future as well as the future of your kids, there are things you should know before appearing in court.
Naturally, your family law attorney will work to prepare you for the hearing, including your conduct, how to dress, and what to say (or not say) to the judge.
Certain things can affect the outcome of your hearing, too. Therefore, if you want the best possible outcome in your divorce hearing, make sure you know what to do.
Certain Things You Should and Should Not Do During Your Hearing
- Never be inappropriate or rude. When the judge issues comments or orders, never act inappropriately to them (even if you disagree). A judge’s assumptions toward you and your conduct could play a significant role in the outcome of your case – not to mention that outbursts could result in a contempt of court charge. Also, never interrupt the judge, no matter what he or she is saying or what you need to say.
- Dress the part. Ask your lawyer how you should dress for your hearing. Your lawyer may advise you to dress in your best so that you are presentable. Dress as though you were attending a business meeting.
- Arrive early. Do not just arrive on time; instead, show up to your hearing time early. That means accounting for potential traffic delays, parking issues, and getting lost on your way to the hearing.
- Read the posted signs. A courthouse has posted signs everywhere that mention what to do, how to behave, and more. Read and follow them. For example, you are likely to see a sign telling you to turn off your cellphone.
- Take advantage of pre-hearing meetings. You may be required to do mediation or have a meet and confer appointment before your hearing. This allows you to sit down at the table and converse with your soon-to-be-ex about any issues. The more you both agree and resolve during this meeting, the better. Otherwise, anything left undecided will be up to the judge.
- Do not speak to the other side’s attorney. It is in your best interest to have your attorney do all the talking and communication for you – especially with your spouse’s attorney.
- Know that some arguments do not apply in court. While you may feel that your ex is being unfair, or whether you have allegations of infidelity, realize that these arguments will not go anywhere in court. Declarations are more likely to anger and annoy the judge than swing him or her in your favor.
- Take notes. During your hearing, you should have a notebook so that you can write things down. Make sure to write questions for your lawyer. You can always show your lawyer these questions on paper during the hearing so that they may be addressed to the court on your behalf.
- The judge only hears issues in the Order to Show Cause. The judge will only address the issues in your Order to Show Cause document filed by your lawyer. Any issues outside of that order will be ignored.
Hire the Right Family Law Attorney for Assistance During Your Hearing
The best defense you have during a family law hearing is your attorney. Your divorce attorney is your advocate. He or she is there to protect your rights and ensure you receive a fair settlement, and will work with you to find a visitation solution that is in the best interest of your children.