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What happens when the Attorney wants to go on Vacation when the Trial is about to Start

May 24, 2015 | Medical Malpractice

The judge tells the attorneys during the pretrial conference that the medical malpractice trial will start in two weeks, and one of the attorneys says he is going on vacation and requests the judge to delay the trial. Will the judge acknowledge and accept the fact that the attorney is going away on vacation, or will he make the attorney cancel his vacation.

Attorneys also Take Vacations

You might think that this does not happen, but it does, and attorneys will occasionally go on vacation. This can affect how the cases and trials are scheduled. Some judges will accommodate such attorneys who are going on vacation, and certain judges will simply not listen to such requests. How do you know what type of judge is going to be assigned to your case? The reality is that you do not know, and you do not know what the judge is going to do.

If your attorney has not told you about this vacation that could be alarming or it could be not. If your attorney needs to take a break and is all caught up in terms of your case, then they could be entitled to a vacation.

Judges Respond Differently to such Requests

Suppose your attorney makes an application to the judge, which is really a request to move your case back because he is going away on vacation for two weeks with his family. Now the judge will have to weigh whether your trial fits within his schedule.

If it does and he can accommodate your lawyer, then in all likelihood he will allow your case to be pushed back those two weeks. However, what happens if the judge cannot fit your case into his schedule because he has a plethora of back-to-back trials. In such instances, he will refuse your attorney’s request. The judge will be apologetic but will inform your attorney they will have to reschedule the vacation, or find someone else to try your case.

Judge is in Full Control of the Court’s Schedule

The reality is, the judge controls how a case proceeds. If he cannot accommodate the attorney’s request, the judge will tell the attorney that he has to go forward with the case, since the litigants could have been waiting a year, for instance, to resolve this matter. The attorney might give a counter argument saying that another two or three weeks is not going to make a difference. The judge will most probably say that it does make a difference since the litigants and the defense are ready to go, and the attorney is the only one who has a problem.

What happens if it is an Expert Witness Who is not Available?

Now, on the other hand, what happens when an expert witness is not available to testify on a particular date? In such instances, the judge in all likelihood will recognize this fact, because it is not the parties or the attorneys, but rather a participant, an expert witness who is needed to testify in the case. In many such instances in New York, many judges will allow shifting the case to a different time in order to accommodate this person’s schedule.