Entering family court can be a difficult experience. The nerves are high, the stakes are high and for someone who has never sat in a courtroom before, it can be incredibly daunting. The Family Court of Australia assists individuals in resolving complex family disputes with their specialist judges and staff. Some examples of disputes include child support issues, child custody issues, and other disputes related to separation and divorce. Many people get their idea of Family Court from movies, and this is often an inaccurate representation. To best prepare you, there are some simple but important things to keep in mind. This article will explore these things and hopefully provide a bit of knowledge that will provide some peace of mind.
Find a great representative
In order to be fully aware of individual rights and responsibilities, it is best to find a good lawyer to assist. Many who do not seek legal advice or support end up walking blindly and starting the process on the back foot. A lawyer is very experienced in the courtroom and can guide clients in exactly what will happen. This knowledge can be extremely powerful as it makes a client feel prepared, confident and calm during what can be extremely stressful times. For those who are struggling financially, legal aid can be implemented to act as a representative and can often yield good results.
While it is not necessary to dress formally, it is encouraged. The court is an extremely serious place to be, and if a client recognizes this interest, he should dress accordingly. Many who choose to wear everyday clothes can send the wrong message and not make the best impression on the judges. For those who do not want to wear a suit, it is also advisable to dress as neatly as possible. Wearing thongs, shorts, shirts or no shoes is strongly discouraged. It is important to know how to dress before entering family court.
Find a babysitter
Many are unaware that taking children to court is discouraged. Because it’s a quiet place that needs everyone’s undivided attention, the less distractions, the better. Unless otherwise stated, it is helpful to arrange a babysitter in advance. Alternatively, a child can be left with a trusted friend or relative. For those who have no one to leave their children behind, they can discuss their options with their attorney or the court beforehand.
It is imperative to arrive at least thirty minutes before the scheduled start time. While it is possible that a case may not be called at the scheduled time, it can sometimes happen and it is important not to be late or miss the call. For beginners, the process can be overwhelming, so arriving early can help prevent surprises that crop up, such as not knowing where to go or who to talk to. Arriving early can also provide a chance to review notes with the attorney and mentally prepare for the trial ahead.
No food, drink, or chewing gum is allowed in the courtroom, so it’s important to eat beforehand. In addition to consuming food and drinks beforehand, it is also wise to use the facilities before entering. Those who have medical issues that may require food or regular toilet visits should discuss this with their attorney or the court well in advance of the day.
Be quiet in the courtroom
All cell phones and devices should be turned off beforehand as it is a quiet and professional arena. Things like chewing, chatting, laughing, or other sounds are frowned upon, so it’s important to be aware of this. Some clients are advised to take a simple stress ball into court to distract themselves while they wait. Others practice deep breathing techniques to stay calm.
In short, there are some important things to consider before going to family court. You could ask family lawyer however, for more information, it is important to first find a good representative who will explain all of a customer’s rights and obligations. Since the court is a formal setting, it is helpful to dress accordingly. Unless otherwise stated, children are not encouraged to come to court, so it is wise to find a nanny in advance. Arriving early is crucial, as is eating beforehand as no food or drink is allowed in the courtroom. All mobile devices must be turned off when entering the room as silence is encouraged. Knowing these simple things can make a family court experience as stress-free and enjoyable as possible.
Executive Editor at Best in Australia. Mike has spent over a decade covering news related to business leaders and entrepreneurs in Australia and around the world. You can contact Mike here.