Your divorce is headed to court, and you want to do everything possible to make sure that the trial goes smoothly and you get the outcome that you want. After all, even a small mistake could have long-lasting ramifications for you and your ex-spouse.
One way to help ensure a beneficial outcome is to be aware of a few common mistakes that people make in divorce court. You will have a much better chance in court once you know the behavior that you should avoid. To help you, we have prepared a list of mistakes that people often make during their divorce trial.
Entering the courtroom without adequate preparation is never wise. You don’t necessarily have to study for your court appearance as you would before an exam, but you should still be prepared. Have all of your paperwork on hand. Be aware of courtroom etiquette. Anticipate the questions that the judge may ask, and have an answer ready.
Leaving your cell phone on
No one is happy when a cell phone rings, buzzes, chirps or beeps during an important moment. The judge will not look kindly on any litigant whose cell phone goes off in the middle of a trial. Not to mention, if your cell phone goes off while you are speaking, it could cause you to lose your concentration and get nervous. Do everyone in the courtroom a favor and make sure it is turned off.
Acting as your own lawyer
One of the most common-and harmful-mistakes in a divorce trial is trying to act as your own attorney. Going to court without a lawyer almost guarantees that you will be at a disadvantage, especially if your spouse has hired their own attorney. You only have one shot at getting the divorce decree that you want, and a lawyer will be worth his or her weight in gold.
Letting your emotions get the best of you
People experience a range of emotions during their divorce trial: Anger, sadness and frustration are all common. Still, you should try to keep your emotions in check while you are in court. As you and your spouse go over the details of your marriage, tempers may run high-but do everything that you can to keep yours in check. Throughout the trial, you should maintain a demeanor that is calm, courteous and professional.