You'll call me "Your Honour"… OR ELSE!!

Why should it matter whether or not it’s a religious conviction? Are you saying that you would allow an egalitarian Quaker to refrain from calling you “Your Honour”, but not an egalitarian atheist? From what I can tell the only difference between the two is that the former believes that all humans are equal because his God told him so, whereas the latter was smart enough to figure it out for himself.

Which is exactly how it should be. The Courts are there to serve the public. The jury is an integral part of the Court, and the witnesses are absolutlely necessary for the Court to function. Both jurors and witnesses are private members of the public who are giving up their own time to assist the Court. Neither the jury and the witnesses are expected to know all the rules and etiquette, and as members of the public, should be treated with as much respect as possible.

Lawyers, on the other hand, are officers of the Court and owe a duty to the Court. If they transgress rules of etiquette or procedure, the Court should correct them as quickly as possible. Lawyers should be held to a higher standard than the members of the public, because they should know better.

Hmmm. I’ll allow this line of questioning. :wink:

Magistrates may be appointed by many different kinds of courts in Ohio: common pleas, juvenile, domestic relations, probate, foreclosure, and municipal. I was appointed by my multi-judge court and serve at its collective pleasure (thus, any single individual judge could not fire me). Turnover is low; firings are virtually unheard-of. Magistrates in our court do everything the judges do (mostly the kinds of cases you describe) except conduct weddings and handle criminal jury trials. We can handle civil jury trials, if both sides consent.

Judges must go before the voters every six years; magistrates don’t. Judges have oversight responsibility over the magistrates - they review all of our decisions and may adopt, modify or overrule them (99.99% of the time, the judges approve).

We have some part-time magistrates, who may also have a private legal practice, but most of my colleagues are fulltime, and are prohibited from having a private practice (except providing legal advice for immediate family members, without pay).

For more info, see Ohio Civ.R. 53, Crim.R. 19 and Traf.R. 14.

As he explained it to me, rising for the court would be to elevate the judge or magistrate to an exalted level reserved for Allah. The guy seemed sincere and not like he was bulls***ing me, so I let it pass.

That’s an interesting point. Most atheists I know are, in fact, egalitarian, but I’ve never had one insist as a matter of principle that he or she could not rise to show respect to the court. It’s not me as an individual who is shown respect by the gesture, it’s the court as a valuable institution in a free and democratic society.

I guess if anyone refused or declined to rise and had a reasonable, principled basis for it - not just being a jerk - I would let it go. It’s really not that big an issue for me.

Seems to fall into an area somewhere between municipal court judges and superior court judges in New Jersey. We don’t have elected judges. All jury trails are heard in Superior Court, civil and criminal. Superior Court judges are full time. Municipal court judges are part time but I have seen a few that work multiple jurisdictions and basically do it full time. Many are older and seem to be the senior partners at their firms. If the still actively practice law in can’t be in the county they work at as a judge.

Forgot to mention…

There are part-time judges in some small towns and rural areas in Ohio, as well as “visiting judges” (usually retired judges) who handle occasional dockets or fill in for judges who are at conferences, on vacation, etc. Most judges in Ohio are fulltime, however, and are not permitted to have a private practice.

more commonly referred to as a pro se litigant/party. Pro se means “for one’s own behalf.” I have only heard In propria persona, which means “in one’s own proper person,” used in the context of contesting jursidiciton in the days of yore. I am not saying it’s wrong to call a *pro se * party a *pro per * party, I have just never heard it used that way.

Perhaps it’s a regional thing. Here in California, we do not use pro se. I suspect that you could use pro se and be understood (we all went to law school, after all), but it simply isn’t used. At least, not in my experience in the courts I’ve been to. Any person representing himself or herself appears in propria persona.

The courts here post the order for morning calendar on the door. You figure out your number, write it and who you represent on your business card, and then go into court and give the card to the clerk to check in. The other morning, I was looking on the calendar for what number I got when a couple women behind me, who had been whispering together and consulting the list, asked me if I could help them. They didn’t know what to do. I asked if they were waiting for their attorney. No, they said, we’re pro pers.

So I suspect that this is just another regional difference. If you really want me to blow your mind, I’ll tell you what we consider an ex parte. :wink:

We often refer to people “appearing pro se.” I’ve never heard of anyone referred to being “a pro se,” or “in propria persona” (although I think just about any judge, magistrate or lawyer would know what it means).

Is the abbreviation “IPP” ever used for such individuals? Are they ever called “IPPies”? :stuck_out_tongue: