I'm preparing my declaration for my Trial Brief for divorce/custody (main issue/disagreement is custody and visitation). I have already submitted a 20 page Declaration in my OSC re Custody and Visitation.
Should I type ANOTHER detailed declaration for my Trial Brief which re-states/reiterates all of the previously mentioned issues/concerns/incident (and include new ones)? How detailed should my new Declaration be. There is a lot of info, incidents and concerns.
Divorce / Separation Lawyer
Thanks for your question. As of 1/1/12 a declaration attached to an OSC (now called a Request for Order or RFO) cannot exceed 10 pages. Because of a case that came out from the higher courts that we in the industry refer to as "Elkins", you have the right to submit live testimony to prove up your case. In fact, in a trial, as opposed to a hearing on an RFO, you will be expected to provide live testimony. In live testimony, you can put forth as much testimony as you believe necessary to prove up your various requests and issues. So unless this is really a trial, you shouldn't be referring to a "trial brief". Rather, it seems as though its a hearing on an RFO (formerly OSC). In a hearing on an RFO you may also request permission to give live testimony. You will want to file and serve a Notice that Live Testimony Will be Requested, you will also want to file and serve a witness list if you plan to have others beside yourself testify on your behalf. In an evidentiary hearing, you are doing yourself a disservice to be unrepresented by an attorney. If you can afford a lawyer at all, you shold try to do so.