At the Courthouse

Last Reviewed: April 2022 Reviewed by: JES Download
  • Find out what courtroom you are in: There will be a Court list that tells you what courtroom to go to. If you cannot find it, ask a security guard and they can assist.
  • Use the bathroom before you go to the courtroom: You may not have another chance for an hour and a half or so once Court begins.
  • Arrive at the courtroom at least 15 minutes early: The courtroom will open up 15 minutes before your scheduled court time. You should be there when it opens.
  • Turn off your cellphone: When you go into the courtroom, turn off your cell phone and make sure the sound is off on any laptop or tablet you are going to use.
  • Be friendly to, or ignore, the other side: You will see the other side to the case, or their lawyer, in or outside the courtroom. This may be the first time you have seen them in a while. You may feel cross towards them, but there is nothing to be gained by being rude or disrespectful. To the contrary, this may be a good opportunity to see if a solution can be worked out, and that will be much easier if you treat them with courtesy and respect. If you cannot speak to them with respect and courtesy, then just ignore them.
  • Check in with the Court clerk: Once the courtroom is open, there will be someone sitting near the front by a computer screen. That is the court clerk. You will need to “check in” with that person. That means telling them what case you are there for, your name, and your role (claimant or respondent).
  • Set up, or sit in the gallery: If yours is the only case being heard in that courtroom that day, then you can set up your material. You will see a podium in the centre of the front of the courtroom. If there is another matter that is being heard before yours, find a seat in the gallery (the audience section of the courtroom) and wait your turn.

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