The article Pet Peeves from the Bench by LA Superior Court Judge Victoria Gerrard Chaney is not about intellectual property law, nor is it about the N.D. Ill. But I include it here to encourage anyone who ever appears in court to read it. Most of the article should be common sense for your average litigator, but apparently many of us need a refresher. (Thanks to the WSJ Law Blog for identifying this excellent article).
While we are talking about pet peeves, I cannot resist sharing one of mine. When you stand up from the counsel table to address the Court or jury, or even just to leave the courtroom, please button your jacket. You cannot underestimate how little signals like that can effect a judge’s, jury’s, or law clerk’s perception of you. I know many women will disregard this advice as a male issue, but it is gender neutral. Although it is less common for women to unbutton their jackets, it still happens and, if anything, it looks worse because we are less used to seeing women with unbuttoned jackets.