This section of the practice handles civil and criminal appeals before the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court. Other Post Conviction Relief including Motions for Appropriate Relief are also an integral part of this area. Even if you lost your initial appeal, or failed to timely appeal, you may still be able to get relief in the court of North Carolina. Under certain circumstances such as prosecutorial misconduct, newly discovered evidence, or ineffective assistance of counsel may be grounds for relief after all appeals are exhausted. The attorney will arrange to meet with the client in prison if necessary.
From minor traffic violations, drunk driving charges, to death penalty capital cases, the section of the practice handles all types of criminal law. If you or someone you know have been arrested, you need to know what your rights are, and how to protect them. An experienced criminal defense lawyer may be able to secure evidence and witnesses which may be beneficial to your case. With a team of professionals, including on call investigators, psychologists, and scientific experts, Hall & Hall Attorneys at Law, PC will work to protect your rights and give you a high quality defense.
Criminal cases in this state are misdemeanors or felonies. All cases start in District Court, and misdemeanors are handled there before a judge. You can appeal a misdemeanor conviction to Superior Court for a jury trial. Felonies are handled in Superior Court, after a probable cause hearing in District Court. Once a person appears in court with representation, there are a series of court appearances. In these appearances the attorney for the accused reviews the police reports and evidence, discusses the case with the prosecutors, and gathers information to help decide how to advise the client of the best course of action. Between court appearances, the defense lawyer investigates any evidence involved in the case, talks to witnesses if necessary, and researches any legal issues involved in the case. Simple cases can sometimes be resolved in one or two court appearances. More complicated cases can take over a year and many appearances in court to resolve.
Many cases are eventually resolved with some kind of agreement with the prosecution. Sometimes prosecutors agree to simply dismiss a case after the defense attorney points out legal or factual issues with the case. Most cases involve the prosecutor and the accused reaching a plea bargain agreement. A plea bargain occurs when an accused agrees to plead guilty or no contest to the court in exchange for an agreed sentence or dismissal of certain additional charges. In some cases, the prosecutor will reduce the charge to a less serious offense as part of the deal.
If the prosecutor and the defendant cannot come to an agreement, then a trial is necessary. This usually happens when either the accused is innocent, or the prosecutor refuses to offer a bargain that the accused is willing to accept. When this happens, the accused exercises their right to a trial. A trial is a formal adversarial hearing where witnesses are called and evidence is presented in court under formal rules. At trial, an accused is supposed to be presumed innocent until the prosecution presents enough evidence to convince the jury beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused is guilty. Trials can last from under one day in simple misdemeanor cases, to months in complicated felony cases.
One of the most important questions to people facing a criminal charge is “how much time will I get if I’m convicted?” North Carolina has adopted a structured sentencing act which gives the judge a fairly narrow range in determining the type and duration of punishment that a Defendant will receive. The severity of the crime as well as the defendant’s past record are taken into account. The attorneys at Hall & Hall Attorneys at Law, PC are familiar with the structured sentencing act and can determine what you range of possible punishments will be if you are found guilty.
Although a traffic ticket may seem like a mere inconvenience and the temptation is great to just pay it off and be done with it, you may inadvertently cost yourself far more than the cost of the ticket. Paying off a ticket can result in points on your driving record, insurance points, and higher premiums. Sometimes it may even result in a suspension of your driving privileges. With the help of an experienced attorney, it may be possible to have the ticket reduced to a charge that will not result in any points against your drivers license or result in increased insurance premiums. Often the cost of hiring an attorney is far less than the cost of increased insurance premiums should you simply pay off your ticket. Each county or prosecutorial district in North Carolina can differ in their treatment of tickets, therefore it is important to have an experienced attorney who is familiar with local procedures and who can get you the best deal possible.
Also, by hiring Hall & Hall Attorneys at Law, PC, it may be possible that you would not have to actually appear in court. For many offenses, an attorney can appear on your behalf by waiver.
Even if you have already paid off a ticket, contact Hall & Hall Attorneys. It may be possible to go back and undo any damage that you did by paying off your ticket.
Coming Soon: Information regarding DWI, Drug Cases, Sex Offenses, Murder, Assault and other Criminal Charges. CASES: