Call us today - 01252 523600

Call us today - 01252 523600

Military Law

Court FAQs

Court FAQs

Below are some of the more frequently asked questions by clients about the proceedings (court) stages of cases. The answers here do not constitute legal advice and you should contact us to discuss the specific facts of your case with us before making any legal decisions.

  • If I am at court will you be there?

    If you are happy for us to represent you and funding is in place (either legal aid or privately) then yes we will be there.

  • Will I get the same lawyer throughout my case?

    You will be allocated or may request a specific lawyer and we will endeavour to ensure continuity of representation. We do, however, work as a team so, although there will be one lawyer with overall responsibility for your case, others may work on your case also to ensure all necessary work is done.

  • If I am remanded in custody will I have to stay in prison until the end of the case?

    Not necessarily. A limited number of bail applications can be made at the Magistrates and Crown Courts. There are a number of factors to be considered and bail cannot be guaranteed in every case. We appreciate bail is often the most important question for clients and we do our best to try and secure bail for all of our clients. A common mistake we often find clients make when applying for bail is that they want to reapply for bail immediately after they have been remanded into custody. 
    While this can be done, in our experience it is best to take time and consider the case as a whole as often the success of an application depends as much on its timing as it does on its substance. You should be aware that if the Court does not grant you bail it does not mean you will be found guilty should you go to trial. The issues involved in a bail application and that in a trial to determine your guilt or innocence are not the same thing.

  • Will my case stay in the Magistrates’ Court or go to the Crown Court?

    This depends upon the offence for which you have been charged. If you have been charged with a ‘Summary’ only offence then your case will be heard in the Magistrates Court. Common examples of these types of offences are Driving while under the influence of excess alcohol or Common Assault.

    If you have been charged with an ‘Indictable’ only offence, such as Murder or Rape, then your case will be heard in a Crown Court. The first hearing will still be in the Magistrates Court.

    The remaining class of offences are known as those ‘Either way’. This means they can be tried in either the Magistrates or Crown Court. A very common example of one of these types of offences is Theft. In these situations, you may have the right to elect a jury trial in the Crown Court if the Magistrates Court accept that your case is suitable to be heard there.

    You should also be aware that even if your case is heard in the Magistrates Court and the offence for which you are charged is an ‘Either way’ offence then the Magistrates Court can still commit (transfer) your case to the Crown Court for sentence. There are exceptions to the above and this is a rough guide only. You should contact us for more specific advice to your case and not make any decisions about your case without taking proper legal advice.

  • Can I get a barrister to represent me too?

    Yes. Under most circumstances if your case is going to be a trial then you will often be represented by a barrister. If your case is heard in the Crown Court then this will almost always be the case. While we pride ourselves on picking the best advocate for the case, if you have a specific barrister you wish to represent you then please ask us and we will do our utmost to arrange this for you. Ultimately you must have complete confidence in your legal representation.

  • If I lose my case will I go to prison?

    Prison remains an option in many cases. There are a number of factors to consider before you are sentenced. Equally you may be eligible for a community-based sentence or a suspended term of imprisonment. Our goal will always be to try and secure the best sentence for you.

  • Can I appeal?

    You have an automatic right of appeal from the Magistrates Court to the Crown Court. You should be aware if you are unsuccessful in the Crown Court then your sentence can be increased.

    To appeal from the Crown Court to Court of Appeal you will need a positive advice from Counsel and grounds of appeal. There is no automatic right of appeal in this instance. Please contact us if you wish to appeal against a conviction or sentence.

  • If I am acquitted can I get compensation?

    No. After a criminal trial you will not be ordinarily entitled to compensation even if you have been remanded in custody pending the outcome of your case.

  • Will I have a criminal record?

    Although the police will keep a record of any arrest and detention, you will only have a criminal record if you are cautioned for, or convicted of, a criminal offence. How long before a matter is ‘spent’, i.e. when you don’t have to declare it any more depends on the sentence you receive.