Today I want to talk with you about laying foundation when you are writing motions to a judge. Recently one of my clients wanted me to file a motion and ask for the judge to enter some temporary orders in his case. In this case my client had a ton of text and email evidence that he wanted to attach to the motion for temporary orders. Some of the emails were long chains of emails between the parties and some of the text messages went on and on and on. Potentially this information is information that really could have been confusing and overwhelming to the judge.
One thing that you have to do when you are writing motions to the judge or when you are presenting your case in court is lay foundation. Not all but part of laying foundation is giving the judge a framework so the judge knows when something happened and the circumstances under which it happened.
So when my client gave me all of these text messages and emails not all of them had dates attached or the dates were confusing. I had to go back to my client and ask him to check his phone, check his records and clarify the dates so I could include in our motion the exact dates when things were sent and when things were said.
Without that foundation I think the judge would have really just wanted to throw the motion for temporary orders in the trash because it was confusing and we couldn’t say when things happen. For all the judge knows, they could have happened years ago and may not have been relevant to what’s happening right now. As you prepare your custody case and as you prepare motions, be sure you write down all of the relevant dates and circumstances under which things happened. Because when you testify in court you’re going to have to recall these dates and give the judge a framework.