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  1. Well, I never wanted to go.. but my time is due next week.

    Re: https://netrider.net.au/forums/viewtopic.php?t=29549

    Nervous to say the least, not exactly my ideal way to spend a thursday morning, but hey!

    Just wondering if theres any certain do and dont points in a court room

    Im not exactly the suit type, a collared shirt will do? As long as I look 'smart' right?

    Any pointers will be appreciated :wink:
  2. hey there just caught up with this thread, My advice would be collar and tie, not necessarily suit. even black trousers or black jeans would suffice with the shirt and tie. You are in the right here so remember that and you have naught to fear, just relax and ensure you stay calm and polite. losing your cool in the courtroom can go against you more times than not. talk through your lawyer whenever possible as he will know the best way to put things accross. your lawyer should give you a brief rundown on what to expect though. Good luck, hope it all works for you. dont take any of this as gospel, I'm just going on what I believe would happen etc.
  3. Few general tips/court ethics:

    Upon entering the court room give the Magistrate a nod to acknowledge them before commencing to your seat (even if they are not looking they are watching)

    Always address the magistrate as "your Honour"

    Dress tidy smart/casual ie: business shirt & slacks and if you have any facial peircings etc, I suggest you remove those and/or if you have long hair tie it back in a neat and clean fashion.

    Most of the speaking will be between the Magistrate and both yours and their representatives. There will be some humbo jumbo lingo inbetween the conversation but dont worry yourself about or what it may or may not mean as most of it this procedural items to keep things moving.

    If you are asked to go to the box just try to relax and answer the questions as they are presented to you. Do not use profanity.

    Most likely the Magistrate will be perusing various documents whilst you are speaking but they are also listening and making comparisions to various statements and other documents presented in front of them.

    Mostly, dont engage with the other party in the court room if they start playing antics or verbally become aggressive, even in waiting areas. Try to emotionally disconnect yourself and dont respond in a flinging of words or fists with them. This is why you have a representative and all your proof documents to speak for your behalf and court security will remove the :tosser: if he continues, which will only reflect more badly to their argument or chances.

    You could always attend a court before your date and sit in the audience so that you have an idea of how it all goes and it then becomes a little less foreign or nervous for you and your day.

  4. The more polite and reasonable you are, the more reasonable your case will seem, and the more unreasonable the opposition will seem to the judge.

    Judges are used to talking to drug addicts and morons all day.
    Just being the polite and intelligent individual you are will make their life a lot easier.

    Remember to speak slowly and clearly too.

    I checked the link and remember that story - pretty open-shut case, dude.
    I'd organise trousers, business shirt, tie... and a bottle of champagne for the victory celebration afterwards :)
  5. Judging by the back story to this, I'd say you have very little to worry about.
    Most magistrates are fairly switched on. S/He will take one look at the police report and damage estimates and will hit the other party up for all the damages plus court costs.
    Honestly this guy is a fool, he's only going to end up costing himself more money.

    Good luck and just RELAX.
  6. Thanks for the replies everyone! Quietly condfident hey ktulu? Can you organise some bubbly for us? Hah :grin:

    Only thing im worried about now, is the fact that ive found all the original receipt's and in my statement of claim I asked for a little more then what is true (didnt do it on purpose) oops :?
  7. One word...

    Happy Hunting
  8. Did you include gear?
    If you do get asked as to why the amount is slightly over, just say 'helmet/gloves/penis protector' was damaged in the accident.
    He'll be liable for ALL damages, not just those done to the vehicle.
  9. Yeah I included gear, but when I brought my bike..
    I got the bike/gear as a package, there for a bit cheaper... hence the difference in the amount im asking for.
    I put down on the statement of claim the items if they were brough individually...
  10. As you should as you wont get them as a package deal when you go to replace them.
  11. Having read the other thread, you will likely get up, just a matter of how well the accused can convey what you are claiming is excessive.

    In the event you are asked to justify, state that quoted individually, that is the cost of the items. I suggest getting a quote from a bike shop for gear, and getting a written valuation of the pre-accident condition of your bike, this will be hard to dispute from the accused point of view.

    Wear trousers, shirt and tie, be clean shaven or neatly trimmed, polite, and remain unemotional. Address the magistrate/justice/mediator as sir/madam, not your honour. It is the small claims division....

  12. +1 to all the comments above, re: court conduct, dress etc. If you are nervous / unsure ask your legal representative. Unless he / she is a complete moron they will take 5 minutes anyway to run you through what to say and how to behave.

    If it makes you feel any better, the average lawyer is just as nervous for their first few appearances themselves! (And lawyers unlike you look really really bad when they screw up!)

    FYI the courts expect and allow for you to be nervous. And as has been said, you are not a criminal, they are a bit more sympathetic to a civil plaintiff.

    nb:Magistrates are now referred to as "Your Honor".
  13. All I can say, from my many hours of observing people filing into courts, is dress neatly and for god's sake - make sure it fits! The number of people I see heading in to court in an ill-fitting, trashy suit that hasnt been worn since Dad's last court appearance 20 years ago, paired with some trashy white sneakers that are the closest to "dressy" they could find in the cupboard that morning, is amazing...
  14. Small claims division is alot more informal then the General division of the local court (which is more informal then the courts higher then it). It is unlikely that you will need to call the Magistrate 'You Honour' unless he has a chip on his shoulder, but you can do no harm by using the more formal address either (and they will kindly correct you if they prefer something more casual).

    Otherwise, very good advice, all I have to add is you should try to be relaxed, let the lawyers get uptight and formal, it's their job, perhaps it's not what you want to hear, but the proceedings are more or less out of your hands now, the parties will make their case, and the Magistrate will make their decision. In fact, you probably won’t have to talk much unless you are called to the box.

    And don't worry too much about the over-quoting, the Magistrate will adjust the amount due if he feels a need to, typically it's best to shoot high, using the more expensive quotes, if the other guy has a clue he will probably produce some evidence showing it should be much lower - the end result will be some place in the middle. Then again, looking at the tale which brought you here, this guy doesn't seem to be the sharpest tool in the box... :?

    My personal favourites are the guys who turn up in a badly ironed shirt, 25 year old tie, hired suit jacket (that doesn't fit/is in terrible condition), and the super-tight faded black jeans! :LOL:
  15. Thanks again for all your replies, I apreciate your time and effort!

    Some very useful information :)
  16. just remember that the australian legal system ain't like what they show on judge judy. The 2 parties present their arguement and the judge makes a decision. The judge should not be investigating too much. As long as you have a decent lawyer who knows how to present your case, you'll be fine as it seems you have a pretty decent arguement happening.

    alot of these cases end up getting settled just before reaching court though