WASHTENAW COUNTY <br>TRIAL COURT

Washtenaw County Trial Court
101 E. Huron St., PO Box 8645
Ann Arbor, MI 48107-8645
(734) 222-3270
tcadmin@ewashtenaw.org

 

General Information

Select from the list below for more information:

Administration Judge Profiles
Central Assignment/Scheduling Law and the Schools
Courtroom Etiquette and Attire Law Day
Handbook of Legal Terms Local Administrative Orders
Hours and Holidays Media Guide
Information/Visitor Reception New Attorney Swearing In
Internships Parking
Interpreters Security in the Court
Constitution Day Witness Information
Complaints



Information/Visitor Reception

The Washtenaw County Courthouse building located in downtown Ann Arbor has an Information & Visitor Reception desk located in the main entrance near security. The volunteers stationed there assist people in finding their respective destinations within the court building, provide maps to other county locations, and provide general information.

Internships

Internship opportunities are available at the Trial Court year-round. Those interested in a non-paid internship that allows exposure to the judicial process, please contact the individual judges’ offices.    

Constitution Day

Constitution Day is September 17th of each year, and the Washtenaw County Bar Association celebrates Constitution Day by providing lawyers the opportunity to go into classrooms and present lessons on the U.S. Constitution to students of all ages. This program requires only a couple hours of your time, but affords you the opportunity to educate students about their rights under the Constitution through innovative and dynamic lessons. If you are interested in participating, please contact Lori Buiteweg at buiteweg@nsssb.com.

Law Day

Law Day is May 1st, a national day of observance to celebrate our legal heritage. On this day, we reflect on how our legal system affects the lives of every American and how the freedoms we enjoy would not be possible without an independent judiciary.

New Attorney Swearing In

The Washtenaw County 22nd Circuit Court and the Washtenaw County Bar Association sponsor a swearing in ceremony for new attorneys that is held monthly. The ceremonies, held in the downtown courthouse building, recognize inductees taking the oath for admission to the bar.

Select a month to be sworn in and contact the appropriate judge for that month. 

Also bring the following to the Court Services office:

  • Original “Letter of Approval” from the State of Michigan
  • Name and address of sponsor
  • $25.00 filing fee (no credit cards accepted)

After the swearing in, return to Court Services to sign the Attorney Roll Book. A certificate will be either given at that time or mailed.

For information regarding the ceremonies and exceptions, contact the Washtenaw County Bar Association.

Parking

There is metered parking in downtown Ann Arbor on the streets and in the Ann/Ashley parking structure.

Witness Information

It is only with the help of witnesses that cases can be fully presented at trial in the justice system.

Once the trial starts, a witness might be excluded from the courtroom pursuant to a request of the attorneys and agreement of the judge. This may bother witnesses who would much rather attend the entire trial. There may be no objection to the witness remaining in the courtroom after they has given their testimony. It is at the discretion of the Court after consultation with the attorneys whether the witness may be allowed to remain. If allowed to sit in the courtroom after giving testimony, the witness must not share with other witnesses who have yet to testify what it is that has been said, seen, and heard. If the temptation will be too much, do not stay in the courtroom. All witnesses will be allowed in the courtroom at the conclusion of the testimony so that they may hear final arguments as well as the judge's or jury's opinion.

Here are some things that may help with giving testimony in court. The first is knowledge of "hearsay" testimony. Under most circumstances the witness will not be allowed to restate in court what someone else said. If this is attempted, it is likely that an attorney will raise an objection. At that point, both attorneys will discuss whether such testimony should be allowed, and the judge will rule on the objection.

Another matter that frequently causes some confusion is what the witness should do when an objection is made. The answer is simply nothing. Just sit quietly. The attorneys will discuss the objection and, after the judge has ruled, the question will be asked of the witness again, a different version of the same question will be asked, or a wholly new question will be asked. The important thing to remember is to do nothing but wait for the outcome of the objection. "Overruled" means that the objection fails; while "sustained" means that the objection is valid one under the Rules of Evidence.

There is a small coffee shop and change machine in the lobby of the Ann Arbor downtown courthouse building. There are restaurants nearby. Smoking is not allowed inside any court buildings. There is metered parking in downtown Ann Arbor on the streets and in the Ann/Ashley parking structure.

Complaints

If you encounter a problem while doing business with the Trial Court or any of its divisions, please contact the Trial Court Administrator’s office.

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