If you are planning to represent yourself in court then learning the secret ways top lawyers prepare for court will be crucial to your success.
It does not matter if you are preparing for a hearing in front of a judge or a full blown trial. Preparation is the single most important step in being successful in court.
Here are some of the secret ways top lawyers prepare for court:
Secret Number One: Preparing a History
Top lawyers first create a detailed history of the events that have transpired. For each fact they evaluate what evidence they have to support or prove that fact. For example, do they have witnesses, emails, contracts, letters etc. Each fact in the history will be cross referenced with the evidence to support it.
Secret Number Two: Cause of Action
The second thing they do is either determine the cause of action (the grounds or legal basis for the lawsuit) or the legal basis for the defense. So, if someone did not live up to their end of an agreement one cause of action could be breach of contract. It may be helpful to look up possible causes of actions or defenses and use a legal dictionary to define them so that they are well understood. Then determine which facts and evidence are needed to prove or disprove the cause of action.
Secret Number Three: Case Law
Top lawyers will then look up cases with similar facts where judges have both ruled in favour of their position and against their position. This is important step can help you determine what the law is and how judges have dealt with similar circumstances. It also can assist with giving you causes of actions you may not have thought of yet. It can also let you know what you need to prove, and what arguments are most successful.
Secret Number Four: Anticipation of Other Side’s Arguments
Top lawyers anticipate the arguments of the other side. It is important not only to look and think of evidence, cases, and arguments that support your position, but also those that do not. You must be able to anticipate the case of your opponent so that you can prepare a response. Preparing for your opponent’s arguments will help you to differentiate the facts of your case from past cases they may bring up. This is very difficult for self represented litigants as they are more likely emotionally invested in their case. However, it is a crucial step and one top lawyers always do.
These are only a few of the secret ways top lawyers prepare for court. For more court tips please see my articles 6 Techniques Lawyers use to Persuade Judges and Jurors and Tips on How to Represent Yourself in Court.