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Courtroom Protocol

  • Bring your court notice with you when you come to court. Your court notice contains your case docket number, the name of the judge or unit, the type of hearing, and the room location where you need to report.

  • If you do not have your court notice with you when you come to court and do not know where to report, please go to the Information Desk on the first floor for assistance.

  • Business or neat casual clothing is appropriate in the courtroom. Males will be asked to remove hats, caps, bandanas or any other head covering unless it is specifically worn for religious purposes.

  • Do turn off pagers and cell phones before entering the courtroom or prior to being interviewed by any court staff. Chewing gum, eating or drinking is not allowed in the courtroom.

  • Your case will be assigned a docket number. You should refer to this number when calling or corresponding to the court about your case. If you are receiving or paying child support through Probation, your child support case will be given a CS (Child Support) number. You should refer to this number when calling or corresponding with the Child Support office about your payments.

  • Do read your court order thoroughly so that you are aware of everything that was ordered by the court. If you are issued a child support order, make sure you read the information contained on the back of the order.

  • Court papers, orders, etc. are legal documents and like all important documents should be kept in a safe place. It is helpful to keep your court papers together in a file folder or envelope.

  • When returning to court, bring any prior orders with you. This is important especially if you are seeking to modify or enforce an existing order.

  • Do refer to the judge as “your honor” or judge.

  • Do speak clearly and directly in the courtroom. The hearing may be recorded and become part of the official court record.

  • Do not speak out of turn. If you are not answering a direct question, prior to speaking you should ask the judge for permission to speak or address the court.

  • Do not interrupt when someone else is speaking. This includes the judge, hearing officer, mediator, the other party, and your attorney. Even if you disagree with what the other party is saying, do not interrupt. You will have an opportunity to address the court.

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