In court, it's not enough to know a fact - you have to be able to prove it. That means you have to be able to convince a jury or a judge that the fact is most likely true. Proving a fact requires evidence - something reliable to help convince the jury or judge.
When preparing your case, take the time to think through the following:
- What is the issue in dispute?
- What do you want the court to order?
- What facts do you want the judge or jury to believe?
- What are your arguments in support of why the court should give the order that you want?
- What are your arguments in support of why the judge or jury should believe the fact that you are stating?
- Are there specific examples that support your arguments?
- Do you have proof that you can use to support your argument?
When gathering information and documents to use as proof to support your arguments, first look for any documents or information that you already have. If the other party has the documents or information, consider whether you can use the discovery process to obtain those documents or information. Learn more about the discovery process.
Consider writing everything down. Organizing the information in a chart may be helpful. The links below provide a blank chart with samples that you can use when thinking through your case.