Criminal solicitors are solicitors or lawyers who specialise in the area of criminal law.
Whether you have been charged with a criminal offence or believe you are likely to be, gaining the help of an experienced criminal solicitor to handle your case is crucial to ensuring that you gain fair treatment within the criminal justice system.
We can help you do this.
What is criminal law?
Examples of criminal areas you might be involved in and therefore need advice on include, but are not limited to:
- Motoring offences
- Drug related crimes
- Theft and shoplifting
- Advising on and arranging bail
- Domestic violence offences
- Assault and battery
- White collar crimes, including fraud and money laundering
- Criminal appeals
Motoring offences are one of the most common criminal offences that individuals commit and without the proper legal advice you may find that you face a driving disqualification. For every driving offence committed the court can endorse your driving licence with a minimum of a certain number of points.
Speeding offences will automatically gain you:
- A three-point endorsement
- A fixed-fee penalty
For the most serious of offences you can get up to nine points endorsed. If you gain 12 points on your licence within three years then you will face a driving ban of a minimum of six months, unless you can successfully present a case of exceptional hardship to the court.
However, it is up to the individual to present their case so you may want to consider gaining the help of an experience criminal solicitor to help you with your case.
Using a solicitor
If you have been arrested for a criminal offence, you have the right to free legal advice and, depending on the circumstances, the right to an independent criminal solicitor. When you are arrested, the police should inform you of your right to legal advice and should not dissuade you from exercising your right.
If you decide you would like free legal advice the police will contact a call centre who will decide if you require a solicitor to attend or if it will be sufficient to provide you with legal advice over the phone. If they decide you need a solicitor, they will contact the duty solicitor who will in turn contact you.
The duty solicitor will:
- Give you some basic advice over the phone
- Inform you that the line you are speaking on is not secure and you should not say anything that you do not want the police to hear
- Usually not attend the station immediately - they will usually wait for the police to call to say that they are ready to interview you
Your criminal solicitor will attend the police station, give you legal advice in a private room and represent you during your police interview. The criminal solicitor’s role at the police station is very important as they check that the police do not break any rules when they interview you.
If you decide you would like to pay privately for your legal advice you are able to choose the solicitor that you want to represent you. That solicitor will usually attend the police station immediately to talk to you about your rights. Your criminal solicitor will then return when the police are ready to interview you to provide you with representation.
More questions on this topic? See our FAQ page on criminal law.
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