Top 5 Tips for Your First Day of Court in Wake County

At The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel, PLLC, we understand that many of our clients are nervous about going to court for the first time. While your first day in court may seem intimidating, a little bit of preparation may ease some of the stress.

Tip #1-Logistics: Know When and Where to Go

To check the date, time, and courtroom of your case:

·         Go to;

·         Select “Wake County” from the drop-down menu;

·         Type in your last name only;

·         Click “Submit Query.”

When the list comes up, find and click on your name to bring up the details of your case, including the case number, charge(s), court date, courtroom, and session.  In Wake County, there are 2 different sessions of court, designated either “AM” (meaning 9:00 a.m.) or “PM” (meaning 2:00 p.m.).  Know which session of court you will be attending so you can take off work or make other arrangements to be there at that time. 

Tip #2-Stay Prepared

About a week before your scheduled court date, the assigned courtroom will also appear on the website above. We recommend checking the website above frequently, as dates, sessions, and/or courtrooms have been known to change unexpectedly.

Tip #3-Dress to Impress

Try your best to dress conservatively. This means absolutely no T-shirts, shorts, hats, flip-flops, low cut tops, or short skirts/dresses.  Sleeveless tops, jeans, and tennis shoes should also be avoided.  For men, we recommend wearing khakis/slacks with a tucked-in collared shirt – ties and jackets are optional.  Women should wear a conservative dress or a nice shirt with dress pants or a knee-length skirt.

Tip #4-Be Punctual

When your day in court arrives, plan to arrive at least 30 minutes early. Downtown traffic can be unpredictable, so you will want to have plenty of time to find parking, walk to the courthouse, and go through security. 

All criminal courtrooms are now located in the new Wake County Justice Center, across the street from the old courthouse, at 300 S. Salisbury Street. Because there’s no way to predict how long you’ll in court, we recommend avoiding metered parking spaces.  Instead, park in the Wake County Parking Deck, which is located at 216 W. Cabarrus Street. 

Tip #5- Ace Your Calendar Call

Once you get through security, take the stairs or elevator to your assigned courtroom. You should see your name on the blue monitor, which is located outside each courtroom.  Go inside, find a seat, make sure your cell phone ringer is turned off, and wait until Calendar Call.

It is important to be on time to Calendar Call because if you are not there when your name is called, you will be marked absent. This can potentially lead to a “Failure to Appear” with a possible warrant for your arrest.

When your name is called, firmly say “Attorney” in a loud, clear voice. It is possible that your attorney may not actually be there with you at the time of Calendar call. Don’t stress! Your attorney should be on their way.

After the Calendar Call, expect that you’ll have to wait.  Bring a book or magazine to keep you occupied. 

If you’re facing a Wake County traffic or criminal charge, call The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel at 919-585-1486 for a free consultation with one of our experienced Raleigh criminal defense lawyers.



Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.