If your unlawful detainer case does not settle before trial, it will get set before trial. It is important to know what happens on the day of trial. In Santa Monica and in Downtown Los Angeles, the procedure is basically the same.
As a preliminary matter the bailiff or clerk will swear in all potential witnesses. Then, the judge takes the bench and explains the process and, generally, the judge will strongly recommend that all parties seriously consider settlement. Judges typically explain that the only way to control what will happen on that day is to settle. Otherwise, one party will likely be unhappy and be unable to dictate the terms.
In most court rooms the judge will then order that the parties go outside the court room and discuss settlement before the judge will hear the trial. The parties are usually told to show the other party any possible exhibits they will use at trial. It is a good idea to bring a few extra sets of exhibits so that you can show the opposing party your exhibits before trial and still have enough copies for you to use as well as an additional copy for the court to use during the trial.
If the parties are unable to settle, then the judge will allow the parties to estimate the length of trial. Depending on the length of trial, the judge will either hear the case or send it to a different department in the court house that may have more time for a longer trial.
Obviously, there is a lot more that happens at trial, this is just meant to be an overview of the general process. Putting on a trial has many moving parts regardless of the size of the case. For help with your Los Angeles Unlawful Detainer contact us at Schorr Law, APC, 310-954-1877, email@example.com, www.schorr-law.com.