If, upon review of your case information, the attorney determines that you have a very strong case and that State’s case may be weak, one option is to fight the case by going to trial. The decision to go to trial is always the client’s decision. Depending on the charge and the jurisdiction, this may mean a bench trial, meaning a single judge presides and makes a decision as to your guilt or innocence, or a jury trial, meaning a jury of usually 12 people decides guilt or innocence. A trial usually takes quite a bit of time to be scheduled – in North Carolina a felony trial may take as long as a year or more schedule and in others it may take two years or even more. This is based on the severity of the crime you’ve been charged with and how busy the court calendar is.

Ensure that all media moments get maximum media coverage. Oftentimes, state LGBT groups simply didn’t have the capability to shape an opportunity for the press, pitch the story, and secure solid coverage in print and broadcast media.  As a result, Freedom to Marry created an in-house capacity to do just that.  We’d work with local organizers and attorneys to shape opportunities and maximize likelihood of coverage.  In certain states, like Wyoming, this resulted in several strong, front-page stories in the state’s most important newspaper as we rolled out a list of prominent Republicans and clergy who were in support of the freedom to marry.  We’d ensure that signers onto amicus briefs who we knew were newsworthy were available to speak to the press, sometimes holding media calls with key amici and other times offering exclusive stories to key outlets.  And we’d work closely with the legal teams, local reporters covering the legal cases, and editorial boards to ensure they had access to attorneys and plaintiffs at key moments (deadlines for filing briefs, lead-up to oral arguments, etc.), had the chance to ask questions, and understood our side of the case. And in every situation, once we’d secure a news story, positive editorial, or powerful broadcast piece, we’d amplify it through our Digital Action Center. 
However, the students and their parents suing UT and other schools allege in their complaint that "each of the universities were negligent in failing to maintain adequate protocols and security measures in place to guarantee the sanctity of the college admissions process, and to ensure that their own employees were not engaged in these type of bribery schemes."
Prepare to defend court victories politically: Winning in court often isn’t enough, as opponents can mount attempts through legislatures or at the ballot to reverse good decisions and otherwise try to delegitimize the win. State constitutional amendments nullified court victories in Hawaii in the 1990s and stripped away the freedom to marry in California in 2008.  Advocates should be completely prepared to fight back against efforts to overturn the rulings, and should also work post-victory to allay concerns, refute falsehoods, and solidify support so as to leverage the win. In Massachusetts, for example, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court victory on the freedom to marry was immediately followed by attempts in the legislature to pass a constitutional amendment repealing the freedom to marry. Without the strong leadership of MassEquality, supported by national groups and funders, and many months of public education work and organizing across the state, the nation’s first marriage state could have been a short-lived triumph. Similarly, in New Mexico in 2013, we prepared for an eventual state Supreme Court ruling on marriage by launching one of our joint campaigns, New Mexico United for Marriage, focused singularly on protecting the ruling, organizing in the legislature, and directing state-wide attention to the joy brought on by the freedom to marry.
Habeas Corpus submitted for Son over a year ago, through NLA.....After serving almost three years for a "victimless Crime", with Habeas Corpus being ignored. Son will be released on 12/14/16....My question is ........He has about $6,000.00 in fines and his Driver's License from a different State is being held for blackmail until bogus fines are paid.....HOW CAN HE GET RESTITUTION OR FREEDOM FROM PAYING THESE FINES?
Unless you are going to Small Claims Court without an attorney, if you are taking this case to court to save money or get a big payoff, it won't happen. A good example is taking a non-compete agreement case to court. After many months, perhaps years, of litigation on whether the non-compete is reasonable and whether the other party breached your non-compete agreement, the only people who win are the attorneys.
I watch the federal courts closely and became aware over time that the administration was being challenged in court on almost every important policy and deregulatory decision and that U.S. district court judges, who ordinarily defer to the government in most of these challenges, were no longer doing so. Deanna Paul and I began keeping track of the adverse rulings. I’ve been watching regulation and courts for a very long time, and the numbers of defeats were well beyond anything I had seen.
In trying a case, a defense attorney will work to highlight the favorable facts of your case and to show the State has not proved the case beyond a reasonable doubt. He will do this in the process of examining the defense witnesses and cross-examining the State’s witnesses. The case will be summarized and important points highlighted in opening and closing arguments. Your attorney will also object to various components of the State’s case based on trial procedures and the rule of law.
Focus field organizing on creating media moments: Litigation-related field efforts should focus on creating media moments that demonstrate support, highlight harms, and create a climate for victory.  Freedom to Marry worked with state organizations in litigation states to organize groupings of supporters that we knew would be newsworthy—Florida First Responders for the Freedom to Marry, Texas Faith Leaders for the Freedom to Marry, etc. Another tactic that created a media moment was launching petitions urging state attorneys general to drop their defense of anti-marriage laws (we’d pursue this only after consultation with the litigation team). The petitions – which always ended with an in-person drop-off featuring children of same-sex couples, adorably wrapped petitions, and families who needed the freedom to marry – were a creative way to build online buzz for the court cases, give supporters a way to get involved with the legal case, and earn some strong media attention that underlined the overarching messages of the campaign.  We’d look to identify the most compelling personal stories that we thought might impact the public.  Additionally, we’d organize Town Hall meetings as a focus point to gather supporters and provide a platform for newsworthy supporters and people with compelling stories.   

Tell the story behind the litigation: At the heart of litigation efforts are stories of injustice to real people.  Our campaigns have sought to use the emotional resonance of the injustice of real stories as crucial ways to make our case and grow support.  Edie Windsor in the DOMA case was a compelling figure – and with a smart media strategy behind her, her story became a face of the injustice of DOMA and the need to dismantle it once and for all.   While the media loves covering the ins and outs of the court process and politics, what moves hearts and minds are people’s actual stories. It’s certainly wise to elevate the story that’s being discussed in the litigation.  It’s also wise to identify and amplify similar stories of injustice in the state and across the country similar to the story being considered in court.   


If you can afford it, find a lawyer who specializes in the area of law that is the subject of the lawsuit. Some attorneys only practice criminal defense, or they specialize in defamation or employment law. You can find an experienced attorney by visiting your state’s bar association website, which runs a referral program. You can search by area of expertise.


Lawsuits can become additionally complicated as more parties become involved (see joinder). Within a "single" lawsuit, there can be any number of claims and defenses (all based on numerous laws) between any number of plaintiffs or defendants. Each of these participants can bring any number of cross claims and counterclaims against each other, and even bring additional parties into the suit on either side after it progresses. In reality however, courts typically have some power to sever claims and parties into separate actions if it is more efficient to do so. A court can do this if there is not a sufficient overlap of factual issues between the various associates, separating the issues into different lawsuits.
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