Self-Representation

Legal Matters

Question

I am self-represented and the trial is soon approaching.  Why should I retain Jaskot Family Law Barristers to do my family law trial?

Answer

Although family law proceedings are case managed by the Court from an early stage in the proceedings to help parties narrow issues and come to a resolution, failing a resolution the final step of the process is trial. A family law trial will deal with significant aspects of your life, including parenting issues, child support, spousal support and/or property division. You are leaving all of the issues in the hands of a judge to decide your fate.

The trial process is governed by rules of evidence, rules of procedure and case law, all of which bind the Court in its decision making. The trial judge is duty bound to make a decision within this tightly defined and narrow framework of the court process. The trial judge is not there to assist you in presenting your case – you are expected to know the rules of evidence and procedure and to present your case to the Court in accordance with these rules.

A lack of knowledge is no excuse for your failure to properly present your case and the consequences can be severe.  A poorly conducted trial can lead to devastating results, which can also include an Order requiring you to pay costs to your spouse if the Court finds that your actions prolonged the court process or claims without merit were needlessly advanced.  

Moreover, second chances are incredibly rare.  Appeals in family law cases are few and far between and statistically, less than 20% of the appeals are successful.  The time for proper presentation of your case and evidence is at the trial stage. 

Jaskot Family Law Barristers can provide you with experienced trial counsel to assist you in the presentation of your case at trial, ranging from lead counsel, co-counsel with your existing lawyer or trial coaching / trial preparation with you if you wish to proceed to trial on your own.