Top 8 Common Things to do When Facing Criminal Charges

Things to do When Facing Criminal Charges

The legal system is quite well defined with the law governing agencies always ready to catch the culprit. However, in some cases, you might be charged with a crime without a fault of your own.

If this happens, then you must know what to do. Not doing the right thing might get you into legal trouble, so check here for tips on what to do when facing criminal charges:

1. Keep Calm

The most important thing is to keep calm. While it is understandable for one to get worries when faced with a legal situation, the truth is that getting worried can only worsen things so make sure to hold your ground and handle things in a calm manner.

2. Know Your Rights

The authorities will typically inform you about your rights when they apprehend you. However, if they don’t they you have a right to ask for your rights. These include:

  • The right to remain silent.
  • right to make communications with a lawyer
  • The right to ask the lawyer to come to the police station
  • The right to asking the lawyer to be present when investigation is carried out.

3. Appear In Court

Once a person is charged with a crime, they need to make appearances in the court. There are 4 ways in which you can be summoned by the court.

  • Arrested And Taken By Police: If a warrant was issued, the police has the right to arrest the criminal, keep them in custody and take them to the court when required.
  • Receive Bail And Go To The Court:

Staying in the police station for extensive number of hours is frightening which is why there’s a bail system. A bail system involves someone taking surety of the accused and taking guarantee that they will appear in the court whenever asked. Other than this, bail money also needs to be paid which is returned if the accused obeys the bail laws.

The laws of bailing system may involve the accused to stay within the city limits, in a particular place or under the supervision of a police officer.

If a bail is granted, the person facing charges will have to be present in the court when ordered.

  • A Notice To Appear: The court may send in a notice with a date to ask for your appearance.
  • Summons: The court has the right to summon you on a specific date.

4. Choose Legal Aid, Legal Advice Or Get A Personal Lawyer

Facing criminal charges, no matter how minute they may be, can destroy your life. If you are facing any sort of criminal charges, you must quickly get in touch with a firm.

Your legal team will not only help present your case in the court of law, but can also help with bail proceedings. Speak to your lawyer and only tell the truth. He or she will also prepare you for your court appearance so make sure to listen to them.

5. Check The Docket List

Check the docket list (court calendar) to see if the charges are valid against your name and no additional or false charges are mentioned. If so, speak to your lawyer about it before appearing in the court.

6. You May Ask For Adjournment

You can have one adjournment in your case. If things are not going in your favor and you need more time then your duty lawyer can appeal for adjournment and to have another hearing date so that you can have more time to prepare a stronger case.

7. Stay Positive

Court cases can go on for months and this time period can get very taxing, especially when you are not sure of the outcome. During such times, you must not give up hope and stay positive as worrying only worsens things not just for you but also for others around you.

This may be a good time to find support in the form of friends and family as they can help you come out of these troubled times.

8. Be Prepared For A Verdict

If you have pleaded guilty then the judge will announce the penalty. If you haven’t then the court may get adjourned and set on a later date when there are more witnesses and more evidence. On the basis of those, the court will have their say either against you or in your favor.

If the result is not in your favor then you may file for a reappeal or move to a higher court. Your lawyer will explain the process to you in detail based on your specific case. Also, if you’re proven a criminal then you should take steps to safeguard your future as it can affect your life.

The key lies in staying positive, hiring a skilled lawyer and providing him or her with all the details.