Last week I had a simple motion to present in traffic court in Virginia. My client just needed a little extension of time to pay his fine.
It took about 30 seconds to actually explain my motion in front of the judge and get his approval.
I had to be at the courthouse at 8:00 AM.
My motion wasn’t heard until 10:05 AM.
I had to wait for 2 hours and 5 minutes for a 30-second motion. And of course I couldn’t do anything productive during that time. You just have to sit there and wait.
This is why lawyers cost so much. We spend hours stuck waiting for things.
How could the legal system be improved?
Telephonic / webcam motions
There’s this awesome thing called the telephone. Why can’t attorney’s handle routine motions like this via telephone (or even better – webcam)? We could save driving time. And even if we have to wait on hold on the phone or in a webcam queue, we could still doing other things in our office.
Nah, that makes too much sense. Government can’t operate like that.
For the record
Two quick points for the record:
1. I didn’t charge my client anything for this court appearance. I consider it included in the flat fee he already paid for his traffic trial. Sadly, many attorneys probably would have billed the client for 2.1 hours for the same 30-second motion.
2. The waiting I had to do isn’t the fault of the specific judge or court. It’s just a fact of our slow, inefficient legal system.
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