Court Documents

The documents that you may wish to put before the court include statements, skeleton arguments, opening/closing submissions and a Scott Schedule of allegations or responses to allegations. It really is important to ensure they will be well received by the judge and anyone else reading them. Too often parents will damage their case somewhat or even sabotage it completely by filing and serving documents which are counter-productive in content and poorly drafted. We help you get your view over to the court in an appropriate and a capable manner.

For each court hearing it can be helpful depending on the circumstances that you provide a succinct professional position statement which will get your view and requirements before the judge efficiently. Our experienced and knowledgeable McKenzie Friends will assist you and guide you in deciding if a position statement will be helpful and will help you draft a relevant Position Statement that will get your position over to the court in a proficient manner. To produce a Position Statement that conveys the issues and solutions as you see it to the court in a way that is more likely to sway the judge in your favour takes experience and knowledge as well as certain drafting skills. They really are important documents which many times are the difference between success and failure at a hearing.

At certain times your Position Statement should contain references to relevant case law and research which may assist the court to decide in your favour. Our highly experienced McKenzie Friends will assist you in adding authorities that will improve your prospects regarding an issue without detracting from it as can happen when inexperienced parties provide such.

When filing and serving witness statements it is important to make sure they are also relevant and focused on the matters at hand. Drafting statements that put forward your view of past events and the present situation as well as your proposals for the court to consider is not an easy process for many. When there are possibly a host of issues that you may feel are relevant and you believe the court must be made aware of so it can make the right decisions, it is difficult to appreciate that sometimes this may not be the best approach and actually less is more very often. Diluting your strong points by swamping with minor issues can often detract from the effectiveness of your witness statement and even be extremely counter-productive to your case. Our McKenzie Friends will assist you in putting your case forward as sympathetically as possible in the circumstances and by doing so make it more likely that your views are heard and considered as measured and balanced, ultimately assisting your case before the court.

At appeals and sometimes at final hearings a skeleton argument may be necessary to bolster your case. This is a document that sets out the pro’s and con’s of both parties cases but leads the court hopefully towards deciding in your favour on the issues before it. The skeleton argument will often require references to applicable case law and research which you will need to assist the court with to raise the prospects of you being relatively successful in a case. A good document takes skill and practice to put together which our McKenzie Friends are able to do for you.

At contested hearings where oral evidence is going to be heard by the parties then written opening and closing submissions which go into more detail than a Position Statement may be necessary to raise your chances of success. If necessary our McKenzie Friends will assist you in drafting a written submission which can be put before the court rather than you making an opening submission oral statement, as the written submission can be far more effective in putting your view of the situation and its remedies as you see it across to the court.

Where the court asks for a Scott Schedule regarding a fact finding process whether within a final hearing or a separate fact finding hearing, it is important to be clear and succinct with the allegations and/or responses to allegations. The court will require that specific allegations are addressed individually on both sides, it is important to put forward your allegations or response to any allegations in a way that assists the court in understanding your view on the alleged incident. Again our McKenzie Friends can assist you with this.

Whatever the document our McKenzie Friends will assist you as required in putting together a document that highlights the merits of your position to the court.

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