The Trials of Virtual Court

As you may or may not be aware, the Courts have made some adjustments in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Imperfect as they may be, they are made in an effort to proceed with as much normalcy and efficiency as possible. Procedures vary from Court to Court, so if you have not received specific instructions for your hearing, contact the court to determine if your matter will proceed telephonically, via Zoom, or in person. If you have a virtual court hearing, there are a few things that you should know beforehand.

It is important to remember that court via Zoom, is still court. Meaning that you should, dress, speak and act appropriately. Dress as if you were attending court in person. Mute yourself when you are not speaking and silence your phone, so that background noise doesn’t interfere. Make sure that there is nothing distracting or inappropriate in the video background. In a Probate Court hearing it is especially important to make sure that your children are out of earshot.

Test your technology beforehand, and make sure that you are prepared for the hearing early. It is important to be as prepared as possible. However, this is not to say that the system will perform exactly as expected. Do whatever is in your power to reduce technological and human errors, but know that should mistakes occur, the Court’s will be patient and understanding, knowing that we are all trying to proceed with as much normalcy as possible, in an incredibly abnormal time.

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