At Hodge Jones & Allen we have years of experience representing the innocent. We stand up to the prosecution who will always be represented by an experienced solicitor or barrister. We know how to fight and win cases.
You are always entitled to FREE legal advice and representation if the police are going to interview under caution, or you have been arrested.
Our criminal defence solicitors regularly represent clients in the Magistrates’ Court which deals with the vast majority of criminal cases. All cases will start with a Magistrate and a large majority will be concluded in this court.
There are certain offences that can only be dealt with by a lay magistrates or a district judge and these are known as ‘summary only’ cases. These include most motoring offences.
To gain free representation, we will need to make an application to the Legal Aid Agency, which include two tests:
1. Interests of Justice Test
With this test the LAA will take into account a number of factors, for example the seriousness of the allegation or if a complicated point of law is involved. Our experienced lawyers can usually tell you straightaway whether your case is likely to pass this test.
Legal aid is rarely granted for motoring cases but, there are exceptions. Call our team for further advice.
2. Financial Means Test
The LAA will also assess your income and expenditure to see whether you are eligible. We can carry out this assessment for you.
Don’t worry if you’re not entitled to Legal Aid one of our solicitors will represent you privately. Call our solicitors and we will agree a fee with you. They are reasonable and we will agree them with you, in advance. We promise there are no hidden extras.
The Crown Court will deal with more serious offences for example robbery, murder, serious assaults and rape. All Crown Court cases will start in the Magistrate’s Court.
If your case goes to trial at the Crown Court you will need to complete an application form to assess whether you qualify for legal aid. Dependent on your means you may have to pay towards the cost of your defence.
You will not have to pay towards costs if you are under 18 when you make your application or, if you are receiving benefits – income based jobseekers allowance, income support and other allowances.
If you are not eligible for Legal Aid we can represent you privately. Our fees will always be agreed with you in advance.
Some clients choose to instruct us privately because they want a very specific service. For instance, they might want to work with a particular specialist solicitor or senior barrister, or they might want advice and guidance before any charges are brought. We sometimes provide a second opinion to clients who are not happy with the advice they have received from other lawyers.
We will never take advantage of the fact that you may be coming to us with a serious problem that needs solving or have no previous experience of lawyers’ fees. We make our fees as transparent as possible; we can often offer fixed fees and will discuss ways of spreading the costs with you; and we negotiate hard with barristers and other experts who we use on your behalf to keep costs down.
Our specialist criminal defence solicitors will guide and represent you. Either use our email contact form or call us today on 0808 250 6017. If you are in need of urgent representation and it is outside office hours please call our free phone 24 telephone 07659 111 192.