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Old 06-14-2017, 10:27 PM
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Default Case Conference Tips

Have my first case conference shortly.

Couple of questions (self representation)

1) How do you address the judge? Your Honour? I believe learning about this in high school - something about "my lord" instead?
2) Any tips to the whole thing? I know that without my consent that nothing is binding with respect to negotiations, but quite frankly, open to suggestions/advice.

Thanks
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Old 06-14-2017, 11:35 PM
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Parties take turns speaking with the Applicant going first. Bow when you enter the court room, always wait your turn and stand when speaking. "Your Honor" is an acceptable way to address him/her. Stick with that instead of the lord thing.

Read this:

How to Prepare for a Case Conference in the Superior Court of Justice | The Law Society of Upper Canada

CC's are an attempt to get parties to settle. Judges look for the most reasonable parties.

Top Ten important CC rules (to me).

Other then getting all the paper work and technicalities done right ...

1. Keep your brief "brief"!
2. Have an offer to settle prior
3. Show eagerness to settle out of the courtroom
4. Do not interrupt
5. Use low or neutral tone and avoid shaking or nodding head when listening.
6. Be sure to say that you will always respect other parents involvement
7. Remain resolution-focused the entire time.
8. Keep he said/she said statements out of affidavits, it irks judges
9. Remain calm and dont let the OP get under your skin .. they will try.
10. Don't sign or agree to ANYTHING you're not comfortable with .. it will haunt you later.
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Old 06-15-2017, 12:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mathatter89 View Post

1) How do you address the judge?
Say "your honour" and say it as if she/he was the most important person in your life and the person that may give you whatever you are asking for if they like who you are as a person and like how you threat them.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mathatter89 View Post
2) Any tips to the whole thing? I know that without my consent that nothing is binding with respect to negotiations, but quite frankly, open to suggestions/advice.

Thanks
I think LF32 covered it very well.

start off by, Good morning your honour, just for the record, it is mat hatter ,
m-a-t h-a-t-t-e-r (pause for clerks to jought it down), this is an application by myself to very the final order dated (state date). There has been some changes (state the changes that have taken place) and I am proposing this solution (state your solution).

If it is an application 'Good morning your honour, just for the record, it is mat hatter ,
m-a-t h-a-t-t-e-r (pause for clerks to jought it down), this is an application by myself for joint custody of _OUR_ children. As part of this request, I kindly request from this court that I be permitted to have access to_OUR_ CHILD on these dates, etc. I am prepared to pay child support based on guideline amounts.


DO NOT interrupt the other parent when they are talking (wait until they are done) and don't try to get into circles with the judge. If you and judge disagree on something then remember that your conference judge will _NOT_ be your trial judge - you will get a different judge. The communications are private. The conference judge can be a very important ally for you to help persuade the other parent to agree to your terms without you having to go to a trial. The conference judges opinion is just really an _opinion_.

Nothing can be made without your consent. If you have any concerns with anything that is proposed then wait your turn and kindly state your concerns.

so if you disagree with something you could say "Your hon our I appreciate that but after having given this some thought, that solution could not work for us due to (State reasons as to why). Your reasons must be valid.

If there is no agreements then "Your hounour, may I kindly suggest that we be given some time to think things over and possibly adjourn this matter back for a settlement conference in a couple months' time ?

Don't forget to confirm your attendance and serve the other party and file your confirmation. Also remember to serve and file your case conference breif and study it before your court date. Have a look over the other parents but don't get bothered by anything they say - they must prove them and they must be relevant valid arguments.

Be super polite. Be smart.

Last edited by trinton; 06-15-2017 at 12:35 AM.
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Old 06-15-2017, 08:50 AM
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Quote:
If you and judge disagree on something then remember that your conference judge will _NOT_ be your trial judge - you will get a different judge.
For clarity: It is only the settlement conference judge who cannot be your trial judge. You can see the case conference judge, or TMC judge, at trial.

In some jurisdictions, case conferences are held by case management masters. They can be called "Master" or "Your Honour". They wear a blue sash rather than the judicial red sash.

Other than the prudent advice set out about, it would be helpful to bring notes for your case. This way, if you find your mind goes blank under pressure you can look at the notes and remember the theory of your case.

Theory of your case - what you want and why you should get it.
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Old 06-15-2017, 09:21 AM
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Thanks all.

In my case, there are a few (3 or 4) cases that I would like to cite - they are almost identical to my case and they were ruled in my favour. Is citing precedent something that is done at case conference/settlement conference or is that really not necessary as long as I refer to a case without saying something like...."in X vs Y, this happened, and this is why it's relevant?". I have heard from friends/colleagues that the reasons as to why I think something is important is almost irrelevant outside of trial as it really comes down to a spreadsheet/maths.

True?

My understanding of these conferences is that it's held in a room with opposing party/counsel and a judge. Based on the above, it sounds like this is held in a courtroom. Is that right?
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Old 06-15-2017, 10:16 AM
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Quote:
Is citing precedent something that is done at case conference/settlement conference
It is something that should be done, but is not done very often.

To do it, you would attach the case to your conference brief and write in your brief how it applies to your case.

Don't show up with a handful of cases, the judge/master will not have the time to read them.

Quote:
My understanding of these conferences is that it's held in a room with opposing party/counsel and a judge. Based on the above, it sounds like this is held in a courtroom. Is that right?
All of the rooms in the courthouse are court rooms. There will be a court reporter and registrar. However people are not making submissions. How close it is to boardroom meeting, or to a "slightly less formal" court appearance, depends on the judge presiding.
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Old 06-15-2017, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OrleansLawyer View Post
It is something that should be done, but is not done very often.

To do it, you would attach the case to your conference brief and write in your brief how it applies to your case.

Don't show up with a handful of cases, the judge/master will not have the time to read them.



All of the rooms in the courthouse are court rooms. There will be a court reporter and registrar. However people are not making submissions. How close it is to boardroom meeting, or to a "slightly less formal" court appearance, depends on the judge presiding.
Fantastic. Thank you.
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Old 06-16-2017, 11:22 AM
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I had one case conference and one settlement conference. The issues were all financial which is less emotional than things like child custody or access.

My advice would be to write a good brief and stick to it. Everything should be in it. In both my case conference and settlement conference, the master and the judge had read it and drove the conversation. If you're self representing, you don't want to have to think on your feet. It's likely the first time for you while, if there is a lawyer on the other side, they've done it a few hundred times. Read from your brief if you have to.

I was self rep'd but hired a lawyer so that I had the right format for my brief and wrote it in a style that the judge would be familiar with. I also had the lawyer review what I wrote. Cost me about $1,000 both times.

For the settlement conference, I basically started with my case conference brief and reused 90% of it.

Important to keep in mind that everything is on consent so be prepared to say no.

Of course, you have to file everything on time with the court and the other side.
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Old 06-17-2017, 04:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ifonlyihadknown View Post
I had one case conference and one settlement conference. The issues were all financial which is less emotional than things like child custody or access.

My advice would be to write a good brief and stick to it. Everything should be in it. In both my case conference and settlement conference, the master and the judge had read it and drove the conversation. If you're self representing, you don't want to have to think on your feet. It's likely the first time for you while, if there is a lawyer on the other side, they've done it a few hundred times. Read from your brief if you have to.

I was self rep'd but hired a lawyer so that I had the right format for my brief and wrote it in a style that the judge would be familiar with. I also had the lawyer review what I wrote. Cost me about $1,000 both times.

For the settlement conference, I basically started with my case conference brief and reused 90% of it.

Important to keep in mind that everything is on consent so be prepared to say no.

Of course, you have to file everything on time with the court and the other side.

Was it worth the $1000?
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Old 06-19-2017, 01:24 PM
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Just to bump this and get some info...

Anyone have any success in writing a good cc brief? My partner has a lawyer but we are also trying to save money so we are drafting, researching and organizing. He was going to start to lay out the brief and then have it ready for lawyers edit/input. My partner gets very emotional and wants to add stuff which is why I want to keep it short but relevant. Problem is, the access and sharing of information issues are VERY relevant to the case. There is case law where parties have been denied financial compensation due to refusal to share info. Plus his kids are pissed at him due to ex interference which has led to them terminating the relationship. Her refusal to include him and her continued interference/denial of access has led to the breakdown in the relationship.

My question is this: how best to refer to all of this? I know that it isn't an access issue, but the access issues have led to the financial issues because the ex is claiming he refuses to pay for anything and the kids are suffering emotionally/financially. Is it enough to simply state that she changed the terms and refuses to share info? Or should he cite examples and correspondence?
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