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What to Expect During a Felony Arraignment

What You Need to Know About a Felony Arraignment

Being charged with a criminal offense can be an overwhelming experience. There is a risk that effects from these charges can end up following you for the rest of your life if not properly handled. By understanding as much as possible about the criminal process, however, you can better prepare for the various obstacles that might arise. Additionally, obtaining the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney can help as you navigate each part of the criminal process. Continue reading to learn more about what should expect during a felony arraignment.

What is a Felony Arraignment?

An arraignment occurs after a person’s arrest and booking. Many times, an arraignment occurs 72 hours after these events. During the arraignment process, a court will inform a person about the charges that are being a brought against him or her. In response, a person will be able to enter one of several pleas. By pleading guilty, a person admits guilt for the criminal offense and as a result, forfeits his or her right to a trial. By pleading not guilty, a person denies any guilt, which means that a trial will likely occur. There are also several other types of pleas that a person can use.

Preparing for an Arraignment

One of the best steps to take in successfully navigating an arraignment is to obtain the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you create a strong strategy. Some of the other important steps to take during your arraignment include the following:

  • Make sure to arrive at your arraignment early. While you will likely end up waiting if you arrive early, it is much better than arriving late to this important event.
  • Dress appropriately. This means dressing conservatively and wearing a suit or dress shirt and slacks or a skirt. It is important to not wear exercise clothing, jeans, clothing with logos, or more casual clothing because this communicates to the judge that you are not taking your arraignment seriously.
  • Check in with a court officer when entering. Avoid approaching the judge or the location where the judge sits if you do not have permission to do so.
  • Listen carefully when you are called in front of the judge. Make sure to respond courteously and quickly when requested.
  • Avoid telling the judge or any courthouse staff about the details of your case. Instead, the only person with whom you should discuss matters is your lawyer.

Speak with an Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer

Being convicted of a criminal offense can permanently impact your life. It is important to make sure that you have a skilled criminal defense attorney on your side. Your lawyer will ensure that your rights are protected and that you have the best possible chance of obtaining a positive outcome. Contact the Federal Criminal Law Center today to speak with an experienced attorney and request a free consultation.