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How Should I Prepare For my First Court Date?

 

Karen Riley Porter: Well, it depends what you mean by first court date. So, that would depend on what type of charge you’re looking at and what jurisdiction you’re in. But typically speaking, your first court date would be a court date in which a trial date is set.

So, if that were the case, you just need to appear in court. You want to make sure that all of the questions that are kind of going around in your head have been asked of your attorney so that she can explain the whole process to you so you’re not walking into court confused as to what is going on.

So, if it’s just a simple court date to select the trial date and you need to be on time, you need to dress appropriately for court. You need to have your questions prepared for your attorney at that time. Now, if you’re charged with a criminal misdemeanor, then that first date could possibly be your trial date. When it’s a traffic case, then more than likely that first court date is going to be your trial date.

So, at that point, you should have already met with your attorney. You should already be clear on what the criminal charges are, what the potential penalties are, what the defense is that could exist in your case, and then what are the likely scenarios that could happen once you’re there so that you feel comfortable going into the courtroom.

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