It is very frustrating to deal with parties who act unreasonably in a matter. That frustration gets taken up a notch (or forty) when the other party is self-represented, because they usually don’t know how the Court process works.
I am having a tonsillectomy mid-February and I am expected to be home for several weeks where I can’t work or speak (my partner will be thrilled!).
I asked an individual to consent to the adjournment of a hearing that was scheduled during my time off. They said “no.” They think it was appropriate for my client to have to go and find someone else to be in my place. They’re wrong.
My request for an adjournment came two months before the hearing and the request was more than reasonable. When I advised them that I would bring a Motion to adjourn the hearing and I would be seeking costs against them, they appeared to be more than eager to attend the Motion to explain to the Deputy Judge why my surgery didn’t matter and why my client should find someone else to attend with them rather than adjourn the hearing.
Well, I attended the Motion and the other side didn’t attend! They refused to consent, and they did not attend the Motion (see the frustration of dealing with self-represented parties?!).
I obtained an Order for costs, and the Deputy Judge wrote in the order that the party was acting unreasonably, considering the circumstances of my requirement for an adjournment.
Failing to consent to a reasonable request, doesn’t make your case stronger, it makes you look unreasonable, and can in the long run, delay the proceedings.
When a party asks for an adjournment, and their request is reasonable, just consent already.
Murray Brown, Licensed Paralegal