Going to court is intimidating and stressful. Here are a few tips on what to do when preparing for your court appearance:
What to wear to Court in Asheville North Carolina
Business attire is the best choice when going to your court appearance. Some variation of a suit and tie, pantsuit, slacks and a dress top, and even some dresses will work - similar to an attorney or executive.
- Denim jeans
- Graphic tees and clothing with text on it
- Gang-related paraphernalia
- Ostentatious colors and excessive accessories
- Exposed skin
- Revealing your tattoos
Your court date is not an opportunity to be comfortable or fully express yourself, but to present a professional appearance and make a positive impact on the jury, judge, and DA.
Preparing for your Court Date
1. HIRE AN attorney
It is critical to have someone on your side who understands the legal system. Hiring a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney can sometimes make the difference between guilt and innocence, and often helps reduce convictions, fees, and jail time.
2. Arrive on time
Always arrive early. In the case that you are somehow incapable of arriving on time, contact your attorney and ask them what to do - you may have to call the judge's clerk and let them know you will be late.
If you miss your hearing, you risk having a warrant out for your arrest.
3. Best Behavior In the courtroom
Try not to speak or disturb the court while you're in the courtroom. You can usually step outside if you need to speak with someone.
Cell phones should be turned off when you go into the courtroom. If your cell phone is taken from you, you won't be able to get it back until 5:00 pm that day.
Do not approach your opposing parties
Stay away from opposing parties in your case. Do not sit near them in the courtroom, do not try to talk to them, and do not make eye contact. Not only is this better for your case, but it's the polite thing to do.
Speaking with the Judge:
- Stand when the Judge enters the room
- If the judge addresses you, append the title "Your Honor" to any of your replies.
- Only speak when spoken to
- Never interrupt the judge
- Keep your responses succinct.
- Maintain eye contact
- Keep your emotions and reactions in check
Speaking with Courthouse Personnel:
Treat the bailiff, clerks, cashiers, and probation staff with the same respect you would show the DA or the Judge. They do everything in their power to make your courthouse experience pleasant, efficient and safe.
Asheville Courthouse Location
The Buncombe County Courthouse is located at 60 Court Plaza, Asheville, NC 28801, near the Vance Memorial Park.