Appearing in court, for whatever reason, can induce anxiety in a lot of people. Courtrooms are serious places; no matter why you are there, the very thought of standing up in front of a judge and jury can be daunting to say the least.
However, with the help of this article, you’ll be able to go to your court date with your head held high, knowing you’re fully prepared for this weird and scary experience. Let’s take a look at how you should prepare for appearing in court.
- Look the part.
No matter whether you are called to be on a jury, a witness in a case or even a defendant, you should show up to court looking smart and respectable. Courtrooms are very traditional places; there’s no room for outlandish outfits when a judge and jury are present. You will be expected to dress in neutral colours and wear smart clothing like a suit.
Looking the part will also give you confidence when you are asked to speak in court. It can be quite intimidating to stand up in front of expert trial lawyers, a judge and members of the police force; wearing a smart outfit will help give you the confidence you need!
- Show up early.
Being on time, or ideally early, is a good idea when you are appearing in court. Not only will the judge look at you more favourably if you show up on time, but you will also have time to calm your nerves and prepare for the moment of truth.
Plus if you have never been to court before, there can be quite an arduous process to go through before you sit down in the actual courtroom. Courts have high levels of security, similar to an airport, so you will have to take the time to go through and be cleared before you proceed. In addition, courtrooms are often expansive places, meaning you should leave time to find your way when you arrive.
- Be open to how the experience can teach you a lesson.
Ultimately, whatever reasons you have for appearing in court, you will learn a lot from this experience! Courtrooms are fascinating places that can really be a learning experience, so it’s important that you are receptive to how you’ll react. You could come out feeling critical of the justice system, or with a new found respect for those who work within it.
No reaction is wrong; each person responds differently to being put in a courtroom situation! The bottom line is that you are open to learning and growing from the experience of appearing in court, rather than letting your preconceived ideas about what courts are like get the better of you.
If you are appearing in court sometime soon, use this guide to calm your nerves and prepare you for the day. You will hopefully learn a lot, and get a lot out of your glimpse into how the justice system works on a day to day basis.