If you are going to court for a divorce case for the first time, you will have a lot of anxiety. Usually, in the first hearing in court, both the attorneys are asked to appear in the court – an event called the Calendar Call. This call is often scheduled to start at around 8:30 and is the time of the day where both attorney will come in turn and give a brief overview of their case, and in most cases, a time schedule of when they expect the case to end in due course of proceedings.
At this point, it is important to note that yours isn’t the only Orange County divorce case in the court – there are likely many others and the process will likely take more time than you expect.
Last Ditch Settlement Attempts
Your case won’t immediately start after the Calendar call. After the call, your lawyer and that of your soon-to-be-ex spouse are likely to meet in what is known in the world of law as a “Meet and Confer.” The aim of the meeting is discuss resolution of the issues that are about to be fought in court. This time of the day in the court is likely to be hectic, because your lawyer will try their level best to make sure you and the other party reaches to a conclusion before the case even starts in court.
When it comes to last ditch settlement attempts, your lawyer likely has already discussed the possibilities of settlement with you before going to court. Sometimes, there are instances when the divorce attorneys request the judge to have an informal Chambers Conference where they can talk with the judge directly in a more informal setting in the judge’s chambers which can help give the attorneys guidance on what the judge might do if a formal hearing is held.
Going to the Hearing
If the last ditch attempts to settle go in vain, ultimately, your case will go to hearing in the court. The hearing in most cases will usually be the same day in the morning or the afternoon depending on the judge’s availability.
The hearing will usually be of two types. One is an evidentiary hearing, while the other can be more of an “offer of proof” hearing. In an informal hearing, your lawyers will argue the case and offer what you and your witnesses would testify to, while an evidentiary hearing will usually require testimony from you and other witnesses, if any, in the Orange County divorce case. There will be a time when you will be required to take the witness stand, and at such times, you should make sure that you are prepared and have practiced beforehand to avoid problems with your testimony.
Gerald A. Maggio is an experienced Orange County divorce and family law attorney and family law attorney located in Irvine, California, serving the Orange County and Riverside areas. Mr. Maggio assists clients with legal issues including divorce, legal separation, divorce mediation, child custody, prenuptial agreements, stepparent adoptions, and other family law issues. Mr. Maggio has practiced law in California since 1999, and founded The Maggio Law Firm in 2005, focusing exclusively on divorce and family law matters.