Making Your Best Impression When Appearing in Atlanta Municipal Court

Posted by Richard Lawson | Oct 14, 2014 | 0 Comments

What To Do And Not Do When You Must Appear In Court in Atlanta Georgia:

As the old saying goes, “You never get another chance to make a first impression.”  It is an unfortunate, but true statement.  We've all had instances where we met someone when we were not at our best.  Maybe you told a bad joke, were less than charming when you were tipsy at a party, or came on too strong on a first date.

Bad impressions are kind of a big deal.  Sometimes they just cannot be avoided, but other times, like when you have to appear in court, they can be, with a little bit of preplanning and forethought.  Read on for tips on how you can make the best first impression when you have to go to court.

Here are a list of things not to do when attending court:

  • Do NOT miss your court date.  Missing your court date is one of those things that will not only make a bad first impression with the judge and prosecutor, but will also land you in jail.  Court dates are not like rescheduling dentist appointments or canceling dinner plans with your friends.  If you do not appear in court when you are supposed to, or if you are late, a warrant could be issued for your arrest.
  • In Atlanta Municipal Court, all DUI arraignments are the next business day after an arrest. This means court every Monday morning after a weekend.
  • Do NOT be late.  Make sure you leave plenty of time to get to the courthouse.  Keep in mind things that could potentially make you tardy, such as traffic, weather, parking, or public transit such as a bus or train.  Also take into consideration that you will have to go through security screening, which could take some time, as well as finding the correct courtroom in which your case will be heard.  You never know how long you will be in court, so it is not a good idea to park in time-limited parking spaces or spaces with parking meters.
  • Do NOT wear inappropriate clothing.  Halter tops, low-cut tops, shorts, or t-shirts are just a few things that are no-no's for court attire.
  • Do NOT bring your children to court.  Make arrangements for child care in advance.
  • Do NOT be disrespectful to court staff, because they have the judge's ear every day.  Let's avoid making your behavior a topic of their discussion.

Here are a list of things to do when attending court:

  • Contact a top-rated Atlanta DUI Attorney.  The Law Offices of Richard Lawson only focuses their practice on the defense of persons arrested and charged with DUI and DUI-related offenses.  They are top-rated Atlanta DUI lawyers who will be committed to your defense.
  • Practice what you are going to say (if anything).  Your lawyer will go over with you any testimony you will be giving.  Take notes. Dress conservatively.  Remember, court is a formal place; dress accordingly.
  • Arrive early in Atlanta Municipal Court (especially for Judge Ward) and find your court assignment on the video monitors just past security (Judge Ward's courtroom is 5A).
  • Make sure you have an attorney there to represent you.  If you appear without an attorney, and are asked to return at a later date with one, do so.  Judges do not give multiple continuances for you to obtain legal representation.
  • Bring any relevant information and documents you may need.  The judge will not simply let you go back home to get anything you failed to bring with you.
  • Turn off your cell phone.  This does not mean to just turn it on “vibrate.” You can be held in contempt if the judge hears it go off.  If you must make or take a call, exit the courtroom and go out in the hall.
  • Be respectful and mindful of what you are told to do by the courtroom security officer.  Courtroom safety is paramount. In Atlanta Municipal Court, Officer Porter is serious; pay attention to what he tells you. Conduct yourself properly while in the courtroom.  Some things are not allowed because of noise, such as: chewing and popping gum, eating, newspaper reading, or listening to music with headphones.
  • Other things you may not do in the courtroom are: wear a hat, have or use a camera/camera phone, or bring a weapon.  Pay attention and listen to what will happen next. Will you need to come back for another hearing?  Do you have action steps or things you need to take care of before returning to court?
  • Ask your attorney any questions if you do not understand anything.  Your Atlanta DUI Attorney is always ready to answer any questions you may have about your case.
  • Hire your Atlanta DUI Lawyer as soon as possible to protect your freedom and future.  The Law Offices of Richard Lawson have the most experienced Atlanta DUI Attorneys around and are waiting to take your call.
  • Do not fall asleep in court.

Of course this is not an exhaustive list of dos / don'ts, and we could not list every possible scenario.  Please use your best judgment and if you are in doubt, ask the Atlanta DUI Lawyers in our office for advice.  If you choose the Law Offices of Richard Lawson to represent you, we will make sure you make the best possible impression in court to help you get the best possible outcome for your case.  Call us now for a free, no-obligation consultation.

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Richard Lawson

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