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Going To Court? What Not To Do!

Attorney Mike Bottaro identifies 5 things that drive judges crazy.


Whether for a traffic ticket or jury trial, going to Court is a big deal. It is such a big deal that in legal writing we capitalize the “C” in “Court.” 

Going to Court is like going to Church. When you are in Church, you are in God’s house. When you are in Court, it is best to also behave as if you are in God’s house, because some judges view themselves this way! Here are five things not to do when you go to Court:

 1. Keep your cell phone on – or worse – talk or text on your phone.

 Recently in Court, many of us were treated to a catchy new dance jingle that erupted in the midst of a judge’s stern instructions. It was, or course, someone’s ring tone.

 2. Chew gum.

On the list of items that can drive a judge completely apoplectic, gum chewing is quite high.

 3. Arrive late.

This one is common sense, but there are many people who are habitually late for all appointments in their lives.  For these clients, we tell them that their Court appointment is one half hour earlier than scheduled.

 4. Arrive with screaming children.

While some judges can be sympathetic to our child care issues and may not openly scold you, arriving to Court with children may, at a minimum, distract the judge from your case.

5. Present yourself in an unkempt manner.

Many of us wait a long time for our “day in Court.”  Dressing reminds the judge that you take the proceedings seriously and that you have the proper respect for the Court.

Mike Bottaro is founder of Bottaro Law, practicing RI personal injury law. Our firm prepares every case for Court. Before Court, we provide our clients with the above information (as well as information more specific to their case). We always provide free consultations on personal injury issues such as RI workers compensation law, auto accident law, and RI SSDI law at 401 – 383 – 5007.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Alicarn January 30, 2013 at 04:17 AM
CranstDONE, that was uncalled for and, poof, your rude comment has disappeared!!
dphs18 January 30, 2013 at 01:12 PM
In the summer, don't wear shorts, you'll be sent home.
English first January 30, 2013 at 01:55 PM
Sounds like you were there. Do you also speak Spanish?
David Silvia January 30, 2013 at 02:38 PM
English !st - yes i speak english as I am an american, my post was to point out of the fines that are being collect yet the state wants to toll the bridges, it was not ref anything other then that, other than most of the people in court are spanish orgigan. And I was there with my nephew who got a ticket.
English first January 30, 2013 at 02:46 PM
Many Americans speak multiple languages.

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