If you are facing criminal charges, you might be overwhelmed with your present situation. It is still important and worth your while to focus some of your time on getting ready for your day in court. Luckily, there are a few defined things you can do to help you present yourself to the judge in the best light possible, such as working with a criminal lawyer from the start. Here are five things you can do to get ready for criminal court.
1. Be Fully Present
There are so many distractions in our day-to-day life, it can be hard to turn these constants off during your day in court. It is important that you have your full attention focused on your case, attorney, and judge. Luckily, there are some things you can avoid on the day of your case being heard. Don’t bring your cell phone into the courtroom, so you won’t be tempted to look at this or accidentally receive communications during an important time in your case. While you might want the support of your family, having your kids or significant other come along can be distracting and might look like you aren’t taking your situation seriously.
2. Be on Time
Make sure you are on time, or better yet, get to court early. This might involve working out transportation options beforehand. If part of your charges involved your license being suspended, don’t drive yourself to court and find another means of transportation ahead of time. Be sure you know exactly how to get to the courthouse and parking options if you need them. You might want to plan on meeting your attorney ahead of time so you can take a few deep breaths and go over any last minute details regarding your case.
3. Take the Court System Seriously
If you know what to expect before going into court for your case, you can be more respectful of the court system overall, which can be a good reflection on your part. Practice addressing the judge as ‘Your Honor’ with your attorney, and take any other etiquette tips your lawyer might have seriously. Plan out a conservative, neutral outfit for your court hearing. If you need advice on what to wear, consult your attorney for advice and tips on how to look the part and not draw more attention to yourself.
4. Let Your Attorney Take the Lead
While there might be times during court proceedings that you will be called on to address the judge directly, all other times a good rule to follow is that less is more. Practice with your attorney ahead of time what you are planning to say in court, and try your best to stick with this. Many times, your attorney can do most of the talking on your behalf, and they can take the lead in your case to make sure this goes smoothly.
5. Stay Calm During the Process
While you might be overly stressed about your criminal court proceedings, getting angry or upset in or around the courtroom is never a good idea. While you might be anxious with delays or your hearing might not be going exactly as you hoped, watch what you say outside of the courtroom. This can be heard by other parties, judges, and attorneys. Keeping your cool sometimes can be the best way to show that your criminal charges were an anomaly from your usual behavior. Losing your cool might make a judge think you aren’t taking the process seriously or are prone to anger.
Working through criminal charges can be a scary time, but if you have the right criminal attorney in your corner, this can make all of the difference. Getting prepared for your case and your day in court as best you can will help with your outcome and might lead to lesser convictions or a plea deal. If you have been charged with a crime in the St Paul area and are looking for representation, contact us to help.