How should I speak/talk to others during a proceeding?

The main requirement for speaking during proceedings and for talking to other participants is that all communications must be respectful. The Adjudicator will intervene if a party or witness uses abusive, argumentative or disrespectful language.

Usually, the Adjudicator will be referred to as Mr., Mrs. or Ms. Likewise the parties and their witnesses are usually referred to in that manner. Using first names, e.g. John, Mary, etc., is also acceptable when addressing the parties and their witnesses so long as nobody objects. If in doubt, ask how the Adjudicator, a party or a witness prefers to be addressed.

When a party wishes to speak to the Adjudicator or when questioning witnesses, it is customary to stand up. Standing is especially helpful when a party wishes to “object” to a question or procedure used by the other party because it quickly draws the Adjudicator’s attention to the objection before the question is answered or the procedure is completed.

However, there is no fixed rule about sitting and standing and parties may request the opportunity to stay seated (or the Adjudicator may suggest that approach from the beginning).