You've Been Served!
Veal & Associates Law: Public Defenders
Now What? A Guide To Understanding It All!
Dear Future Client,
If you're reading this flyer, you're probably a defendant. This means you are defending yourself and the charges made against you and you've contacted us for help. The plaintiff is the person that is filing a complaint against you, this is the person charging you and the claim they have against you. It's the reason you're here. If you fail to show to your court date you will get a summons from the court to appear. These aren't all bad and they can also be used to call people for jury duty or for a witness testimony.
The first step to all of this is pleadings. This is the beginning stage of a lawsuit in which parties formally submit their claims and defenses. The plaintiff submits a complaint stating the cause of action (the reason). The defendant (you) submits an answer stating his or her defenses and denials (the reason you believe you are innocent).
The next step is the pretrial conference. This is just a formal meeting in front of the trial judge with both parties present. This is before the trial in court in front of the judge and jury. If we are lucky we will be able to have a mediation of the charges to negotiate a settlement prior to court. This depends on the severity of the claims and the cooperation of both parties. This leads to the arbitration of the dispute being settled out of court all together. This is good and it's what we want.
If we do end up going to court, it all lies in the decision of the jury and the preponderance of evidence, which is a fancy way of saying, the more convincing the evidence the more truth is appear to hold. It doesn't matter how much evidence they have against you, as long as the evidence they have is substantial and convincing.
Finally, after the trial, should we go to court, the judge will ask the jury to present the verdict of the case. This will be when we find out if you are found guilty, or not guilty, of the charges brought against you. If we find that the verdict is outrageous, we can appeal the conviction to be judged by a higher court. The review of the case could result in better terms or make no difference in your sentence at all. In most cases, it is worth a shot and we WILL fight for you.
Veal & Associates Law: Public Defenders are here to help YOU! We want to make sure you are educated on the aspects of your case and we don't wan't you to live in the dark when it comes to the judicial system.