When a court is in session, every party has an assigned location. For lawyers, counsel table serves as a geographical anchor while the case is being heard.

Counsel must seek the permission of the judge to approach anyone in the courtroom during a hearing. This includes a witness, the court clerk, or even a client in the prisoner’s dock.

When counsel leaves their assigned location, counsel should be cognizant of the fact that their comments may not be recorded if they are too far away from a microphone. 

 Other considerations: 

  • All items intended for the judge should be given to the court clerk or the sheriff.

  • In Canada, there are no sidebars - counsel do not approach the bench while the court is in session to have an off the record conversation with the judge.

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