1. SUMMARY OF FACTS leading to the alleged violation, and/or events leading to an arrest, if any, (any interaction with the officer as to what he/she told you and what you told him/her.) Although, we discussed your case a summary of facts is an unofficial declaration and will help recall the events should they because hazy in the future.
2. Discussing you Case. Any discussion between us, or an attorney from our firm is protected under an attorney-client privilege. This means, in short, that our conversation, generally, is protected by law and we cannot reveal privileged information to someone. DO NOT post any information regarding this case online through any social media outlets such as, facebook, twitter, Instagram, and so forth. Keep discussion to a minimal as the prosecutor COULD subpoena anyone who has information regarding this case. If you need to discuss your case, contact our firm. However, you can totally follow us on Facebook, and Instagram.
3. Court Appearance. Generally speaking, if you are charged with a misdemeanor offense, you are NOT required to be present for any stages of the legal proceeding expect when the case is being resolved. Please note, if the judge orders you present, you MUST be present at the court hearing. If you are charged with a felony offense, you MUST be present in court. However, certain expectations are available, to be determined on a case by case basis.
4. Court Procedure. Generally speaking, most criminal matters will be divided into an arraignment, pre-trial, and a trial. If the underlining offense is a felony a preliminary hearing will be conducted, and if held to answer (enough evidence to preliminary find you guilty) you will be rearranged and a trial will be ordered.
a. Arraignment. At the arraignment stage, the judge will read the alleged violations of and ask for us to enter a plea. At this point, we will make all necessary motions, if applicable, enter a plea (Not Guilty) on your behalf. Typically, we continue the arraignment at least thirty (30) days in order to request additional discovery.
b. Pre Trial. At the pre-trial conference, we will make motions, request additional discovery, exchange discovery, and so forth in an attempt to resolve your case. Generally, the court does favor early resolution, so we fight aggressively to get the best outcome possible. In addition, we will discuss your case with the People, discuss any mitigating factors in your case, to resolve your matter, if possible.
c. Trial. At the trial stage, we will argue and advocate your case. We will confront the officer and compare your provided statement of facts with his side. Present our evidence, if any, to contradict the officer’s testimony and evidence against us. The burden to prove you guilty is on the People to do so. We do everything we can, in order to create some down.
d. Preliminary Hearing (Felony Case). At the preliminary hearing, is a hearing of the evidence that the People will present that a crime was committed, and that you committed the crime. This hearing is beneficial for us, as this would be the first opportunity for us to hear most, not all, of the evidence against you for this alleged violation. We have an opportunity to question the officer, witness, and so forth. Unfortunately, the standard of proof is different from trial in which, the People would need to only prove by a “preponderance of the evidence.” In other words, more likely than not you committed that crime.
5. Court Updates. Our office will make every effort to provide you with updates as they become available. However, it is not always feasible to provide you with same-day updates. As such, we request that you provide our office with one (1) week grace period to provide you with these updates. We understand how important these legal matters are to you and we will work diligently to provide you with updates as quickly as possible. In all criminal cases, we need to scan, upload, and so forth all the discovery and provide a copy for you to review. We will explain your case with you in great detail, but we love you to be able to read the evidence against you. Updates will be sent either via email, text message, or via telephone, which ever method is most convenient for you.
6. Bench Warrant & Recall. If you have failed to appear to court on the date listed on your citation, failure to pay a fine, and/or failure to obey a court order, you may have a bench warrant. A warrant is an order to arrest you and bring you in front of the judge. In order for us to clear a bench warrant, we must appear to the court where you have your warrant. Generally, some courthouses will allow us to appear on your behalf without your presence. However, some courthouses will REQUIRE you to be present. Please note, some judges may to not release you on your “own recognizance” or “without posting bail” while your case is being resolved. Prior to recalling your warrant, an attorney will discuss this process with you.
7. Bonds. If you are required to post a bail/bond due to your unique case, we have a few optional trusted companies. We have no affiliation with these companies, but we have used them in the past for our clients.
a. Bond Hearings. If you are not granted “OR” or “own recognizance,” we will hold a bond hearing for your case. During this hearing, we will argue for you to be released without posting any bail, but each case is unique and each individual is unique. A thorough evaluation will be made prior to attending this hearing by an attorney.
8. Jury Trials. If a case cannot be resolved prior to this stage, we will review and discuss your case with you prior to setting your case to trial. Generally, a jury trial is an additional cost as specified by your retainer agreement. If no retainer agreement exists, this section will reflect and advise/inform you of the additional costs. Most cases are resolved without the need for a jury trial.
9. 977 Authority. By allowing us to represent you, you are hereby granting us 977 authority to represent you in court, without your presence. Penal Code 977, in short, we as your attorney can appear without you being present in court on misdemeanor offense. If you are charged with a felony, you MUST be present. Throughout your case, we will make your appearances without you present and provide you with updates after any court date. Please note, we will never enter a plea of guilty, and/or no contest without your express authorization and/or legal forms. We require all of our clients to be present on the day we are able to resolve your case, some exceptions may be made.
10. Guarantees. Although our law office has a high success rate for cases to be reduced, dismissed, and/or rejected, we cannot and will not offer any GUARANTEE that your alleged criminal offense(s) will be dismissed and/or reduced to an infraction, parking ticket, or any non-criminal violation. However, we do guarantee that our office will work diligently to obtain the most favorable result for you.