Lawyers spend years learning how to question witnesses, present evidence, and make arguments in court. Before you make your courtroom debut, you should learn the basics abouthow to follow the procedures and rules of the courtroom and how to prove your case. First, ask the court clerk for a copy of your court's local rules, which may include everything from deadlines for various trial procedures to nitpicky restrictions on how small your font can be in documents you submit to the court. Second, read Represent Yourself in Court, by Paul Bergman and Sara Berman (Nolo), a great resource that explains how to handle every step in a civil trial.
If the facts in your case are questionable and there is significant risk for conviction at trial and the potential consequences are too high, an alternative to resolving your case by trial is to accept a plea agreement. It is important to have a criminal lawyer, whether hired or court appointed, helping you with your case, but this is especially true if you are considering a plea.

In almost all situations, a negotiated solution to a dispute is quicker, less expensive and more private than litigating in court. Often, judges require litigants to attempt to reach agreement using a trained facilitator called a mediator before they will be allowed to move forward to a courtroom trial. Take full advantage of the available opportunities for mediation. Cooperate fully with the mediator's requests, and see if it's possible to arrive at a negotiated deal that both you and the other side can live with.
The state caused my mother to die three months after they took her from her home and placed her in a nursing home, where she refused to eat and developed a giant bed sore. I have the evidence. I had the funeral home take pictures of her body. She weighed only 85-90 pounds all her life. When she died in the nursing home, she barely weighed 60 pounds. Before they took her from her home, the only physical problem she had was slight dementia. The trauma caused her to stop eating. 
Though the majority of lawsuits are settled before ever reaching a state of trial,[3] they can still be very complicated to litigate. This is particularly true in federal systems, where a federal court may be applying state law (e.g. the Erie doctrine, for example in the United States), or vice versa. It is also possible for one state to apply the law of another in cases where additionally it may not be clear which level (or location) of court actually has jurisdiction over the claim or personal jurisdiction over the defendant, or whether the plaintiff has standing to participate in a lawsuit. About 98 percent of civil cases in the United States federal courts are resolved without a trial. Domestic courts are also often called upon to apply foreign law, or to act upon foreign defendants, over whom they may not even have the ability to even enforce a judgment if the defendant's assets are theoretically outside their reach.
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