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Know your options before your arraignment

When you face a criminal charge of any sort, including a theft or larceny charge, you will be arraigned. Typically, the arraignment process comes after the arrest, booking and bond proceedings. There are several things that occur during the arraignment hearing. If you are facing criminal charges, making sure that you are ready for the arraignment is crucial.

At the arraignment, the charges you are facing will be read to you. It is at this hearing that you will have to plead guilty or not guilty to each of the charges you are facing.

It is important that you make sure you have a lawyer who can represent your interests, especially if you are facing serious charges. At the arraignment is where people who can't afford a lawyer can find out if they are eligible for a court-appointed attorney.

Another important occurrence during the arraignment is that you can have the issue of your bail amount readdressed. This might mean that you could end up with a lower bail than what you had previously.

There is something else that is very important that occurs at the arraignment. The upcoming court dates for your case will be determined at the arraignment. This includes the preliminary hearing, pretrial motion hearings and the trial.

Ideally, you and your attorney will be able to discuss your case before you are arraigned. This would give you a chance to ask questions so that you can ensure you understand what you are facing. It also gives the chance to talk through your options with your attorney before you face the judge.

Source: FindLaw, "Arraignment," accessed Oct. 13, 2016

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