Civility in the Courtroom

This article by the Press-Enterprise gives an interesting perspective about how lawyers and attorneys can best serve their clients by using a more civil approach. Contrary to popular belief, the best attorneys are not always the loudest. Oftentimes, I have seen where bluster actually hurts the client. A recent example is illustrative: once I was in court waiting to speak to the District Attorney and another lawyer was in front of me. Although I did not hear the beginning of their conversation, at some point I heard the defense lawyer start to yell at the District Attorney, which only made the District Attorney get angry although she didn't lose her temper. Eventually, the defense lawyer got up, yelled some more and then stormed away.

I was next in-line. My thought was to diffuse the situation and be overly civil to the District Attorney given what she had just experienced. After she collected her thoughts, she and I began to speak and after a few moments, she agreed with what I wanted and reduced the charges. In that instance, it was my client who prevailed while the other client suffered.

The point is that the attorney's only responsibility is that the client's case resolve in a favorable manner and not to be the loudest in the room.