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Top 5 Ways to Prepare for Your First Vegas Court Appearance

Brian J Smith Aug. 12, 2018


The idea of going to court is frightening even when you are working with a Las Vegas federal criminal defense lawyer. You hope the outcome is in your favor, but you are concerned about the rules and formalities that exist in a courtroom. If you are facing several court appearances, it is the first that is so stressful as you will know what to do on subsequent appearances if there are any. These five tips can help you prepare for that first appearance.

Organize Yourself

Get everything in order as far in advance as you can to be sure nothing is missed. Put all your paperwork and documentation together in the order you will need them in court. Talk to your drug defense attorney before your court date in order to learn what documentation they will need so you are sure you have everything in order.

Make a Courthouse Visit

One of the things a drug defense attorney Las Vegas residents trust recommends is to visit the courthouse before you need to be there for court. This helps you learn the best route to take to get to the courthouse and, if you plan your visit around the time of your appearance, you will know how the traffic may be during that time of day. Go inside the courthouse and find the courtroom. If possible, watch some of the proceedings so you have an idea what to expect the day you are appearing in court.

Choose the Right Outfit

What you wear to court is very important. When you visit the courthouse, you will notice that most people are dressed nicely. If you are male, you will want to wear dress pants, a button-down shirt with a collar and a tie. If you own one, a suit is recommended. If you are female, a dress or skirt below the knee or dress pants is required. Choose neutral, subdued tones in clothing. Your best look is one that is conservative and professional. Even your hairstyle is important. Avoid brightly colored mohawks or outlandish styles if possible.

Schedule Your Day

You will want to arrive at the courthouse early, so be sure not to plan anything prior to your appearance. If possible, take the entire day off if you are working as your case may not be called exactly when the appearance is scheduled. You need to be seated in the courtroom before the time your case is scheduled as arriving even five minutes late could result in your case being called before you arrive. Judges do not look favorably on plaintiffs or defendants who arrive in their courtroom late.

Remain Level-Headed and Calm

It is perfectly natural to be nervous about court appearances. In fact, even a seasoned drug defense attorney Las Vegas admit to being nervous when they enter a courtroom. If you simply educate yourself on courtroom etiquette and rules, dress appropriately and arrive at the courthouse early with all your information organized, things should go smoothly. Remain quiet and wait your turn to speak. Avoid facial expressions that express your displeasure with the testimony from the other side. If you are unhappy with the outcome, discuss it with your attorney but remain calm inside the courtroom.

If you are facing your first court appearance in Las Vegas, contact Las Vegas federal criminal defense lawyer Brian J. Smith for assistance. You can reach him by calling 702-380-8248, filling out the form online or sending an email to