What to do before coming to court
MAKE SURE YOU KNOW THE DATE AND TIME YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO APPEAR. Failing to appear on the correct date and time could result in the issuance of a warrant for your arrest.
If you have lost your paperwork, or need to be sure you have the correct date please click here for courts, locations and contact information.
MAKE SURE YOU KNOW HOW TO GET TO THE COURT. Directions to each court location may be found on the Judicial Branch website.
Be sure to make your travel arrangements ahead of time and leave home early enough to be in court on time. Prepare for traffic, weather, etc.
Court Appointed Counsel: If your charges started in the Circuit Court and you have completed a Financial Affidavit form and you have been appointed counsel you do not need to reapply. If you received indictment paperwork without charges being brought in Circuit Court first, you can now apply for court appointed counsel. NHJB-2313-DFSSup & Checklist.
IF YOU SPEAK TO A LAWYER, MAKE SURE THE LAWYER KNOWS THE DAY AND TIME YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO BE IN COURT.
Dress Appropriately: The proceedings in any courtroom around the state are conducted in a dignified and respectful manner; clothing should reflect the seriousness of the situation. Do not wear torn clothing, shorts, cut-offs, tee shirts, tank tops or clothing with slogans or written expressions. Your clothes should be neat and clean.
CELL PHONES - cell phone usage in the courtroom is PROHIBITED. BE SURE YOUR CELL PHONE IS OFF OR ON VIBRATE WHILE IN THE COURTROOM!
CHILDREN - Courts do not have any facilities for children. You should make arrangements for your children during the day -the courtroom is not an appropriate place for children and will not prevent you from being taken into custody if you are incarcerated or sentenced.
CHANGING THE DATE - you may not call the court if the date of your appearance is inconvenient and simply change it. A document called a "Motion to Continue" must be filed at least 10 days in advance (if possible) of your hearing and you must contact the prosecutor to see if he/she agrees. If you have an emergency that prohibits you from attending then by all means call, however the court will likely not reschedule an appearance based upon a non-emergency event.