If you find yourself facing criminal charges, the most practical thing you could do is secure legal counsel as quickly as possible. Having a Toronto criminal lawyer on your side is essential if you want to get through this situation and know there’s someone looking out for your rights. Here are some of the ways that the lawyer will do so before and during the trial.
Being Present When You Speak With the Authorities
You are not under an obligation to engage in questioning related to the charges without the presence of legal counsel. In fact, you should say as little as possible until your lawyer has arrived. Even then, it’s important to look to your legal counsel when it comes to determining whether or not to answer a question. Your lawyer knows what sort of questions the authorities can ask. There’s also the matter of how those questions are worded. If your lawyer has any objection, follow his or her lead and act accordingly.
Arranging for Your Bail
Depending on the nature of the criminal charges and your past history, you may be eligible to be released on bond. If so, your lawyer can be present at the preliminary hearing to ask the court to set bail. Assuming the court agrees and sets the amount, your lawyer will work to have the bond posted and get you released pending the court date. This is good, since it allows you to continue going to work and taking care of things until you have to appear in court. It also makes it easier for you and your legal counsel to meet and discuss the case without having to make arrangements to meet during visiting hours.
Gathering Details About the Alleged Crime
Your lawyer will do more than look over the information collected and that’s currently in the hands of the prosecutor. Each bit of available information will be checked, confirmed, and gone over to see if any additional angles can be discovered. There will also be the matter of making sure everything connected with the arrest was done in accordance with current procedures and laws. At some point, your lawyer is likely to reach out to see if others can provide some additional insights. This may involve contacting witnesses who received no more than a cursory visit from the police or who haven’t been interviewed in depth by the prosecution. There may also be others who were not contacted at all that your lawyer wants to speak with. In any case, what’s found could have a bearing on the course of your defence.
Discussing the Case With You
Expect a lot of questions from your lawyer. Some of them may seem to be related to the fringes of the case, but don’t hesitate to provide answers. Your lawyer may have noticed something that needs to be investigated in more detail. There’s always the chance that additional information would provide something helpful to your defence. This is where you should cooperate fully with your legal counsel. Remember that what you say is held in confidence. No matter how embarrassing or awkward you may feel, rest assured your lawyer has heard it all before. If it isn’t needed to mount your defence, then the information will remain between the two of you.
Preparing You For What Could Happen During the Trial
Your legal counsel will seek to prepare you for what could happen in the courtroom. Much of that preparation has to do with possible outcomes. From the best possible result to the worst-case scenario, the point is to ensure you have no illusions about what might happen. This allows you the opportunity to organize your affairs prior to the trial’s start date. You’ll also receive advice on how to conduct yourself while in court. One key thing to remember is that you only speak when spoken to by the judge, the prosecuting attorney, or your lawyer. Any other time you feel something needs to be said, relay it to your lawyer and trust it will be introduced at the proper time. Your criminal lawyer is there to ensure your rights are protected every step of the way. Lean heavily on your legal counsel’s advice and cooperate to the best of your ability. In the long run, the odds for a favourable outcome will be better.