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Do I have To Talk To A Federal Grand Jury?

April 2, 2022 Federal Criminal Attorneys

Any kind of legal case, whether a civil or a criminal matter, is likely to take time to complete. The process of hearing and deciding on a case may take weeks if not months or years. Part of this process may involve a specific procedure known as a grand jury. Unlike some other types of juries, the purpose of the grand jury is not to find out if the person who might be accused of a crime is innocent or guilty under the laws of the state. Instead, the grand jury is designed to determine if there is enough evidence to begin the process of charging the person with felony. A felony is a very serious crime.

People who have been convicted of a felony may face all sorts of restrictions on their lives. A felony conviction may prevent someone from voting. It can also prevent them from owning or using any kind of firearm. Many states allow employers the automatic right to refuse to hire a convicted felon even if that person has the qualifications to fill the job. The possibility of being accused of a felony can also smear a person’s reputation in the public eye.

In addition, it can be very costly to try someone of such a crime. This is why many prosecutors want to make sure they have a case. Enter the grand jury. The grand jury process allows the prosecutor to determine if can probably get a guilty verdict. For certain crimes, heading to a grand jury is actually a requirement under the American constitution. This process is taken very seriously by many prosecutors. They will present their case in front of a group of people that can be as small as sixteen or as large as twenty-three in number depending on the venue. The grand jury is not used in many states. It is only applies to federal felonies.

Getting a Subpoena

You might be called to speak in front of a grand jury for several reasons. One of the most common is that you might later be accused of a crime. Another reason that you might be called in front of a grand jury is that you are a witness to a crime. The prosecutor wants you to present evidence of what you’ve seen in front of a group of people who otherwise have no knowledge of the issues that might surround any wrong doing.

When you get that summons, now is the time to talk to a lawyer if you have not done so before. In general, the law requires that you must present what you know to the prosecutor and all members of the grand jury. If you don’t, you may be in violation of many laws. If you have evidence, you must be willing to hand it to grand jury when get that notification. At the same time, as is the case in many legal issues, there are certain exceptions to the rules that might apply to you personally during this process.

Privileged Information

The American constitution offers residents many specific legal rights. One such right is what is known as privileged information. By law, there are certain things people do not have to do legally. One of the most important of such rights is the right to avoid self incrimination. Essentially this means that all people in the United States are not obligated to give statements that might cause them to be charged with a crime. This is popularly known as taking the fifth or citing the fifth amendment to the Bill of Rights when speaking in a court of law. The same laws that apply in other courts also apply during the grand jury process.

You cannot be forced to testify that you committed a crime. This right is fairly broad. You cannot be compelled to state that you killed someone outright. The grand jury system also cannot compel you to give evidence that might lead anyone else to conclude that you probably committed a crime. So you also can’t be forced to state that you were at a murder scene even if other evidence points to the fact that you were present.

Other forms of privilege also apply when you are dealing with a grand jury summons. Husbands and wives cannot be forced to testify against each other in a grand jury trial. The same is true of any communications that you had with your legal counsel. You can’t be forced to reveal such information. You can volunteer it, of course. But you can’t be compelled by the state to talk about in a court. If you are facing such issues, now is the time to consult with a lawyer. They can explain such legal matters in much greater details in person.

Why you need a lawyer for a Federal Grand Jury Subpoena

Currently, a lot of people have been convicted or are facing federal criminal charges across the US. The public has looked down upon the importance of having an attorney during a grand Federal Grand Jury Subpoena. Usually, a grand jury comes first before any criminals charges proceeding. In the event that you are issued with a notice to appear before a grand jury it highly probable that you are under probe for a federal criminal offense. Under normal circumstances, the jury and the prosecution team will work together to establish whether you are to face criminal charges or not. This jury proceeding will undoubtedly weigh much on the possibility of facing federal criminal charges.

Appearing before a federal grand jury without a lawyer could be suicidal in the sense that you are most likely to face criminal trials. Getting a competent and professional attorney/ lawyer will put you at ‘ahead’ of the system. It will in a long way help you avoid the stressful criminal trials that could probably culminate to conviction. The attorney will represent you and work to prove to the jury that the evidence presented by the prosecution team is void and hence proving your innocence. Hiring a lawyer is the best shot and chances are that you will be relieved of probable criminal trials.

So, how does the Grand Jury Proceedings look? A grand jury constitutes a 16 to 23 member group. These individuals are called to serve in the court just like in an ordinary court proceeding. They are all mandated to make intensive reviews on the evidence tabled by the prosecution and determine your fate. In case, there is enough evidence, they recommend for a court trial.

On the other hand, if the evidence is insufficient, then the case could end at that point. However, the prosecution team could opt to push for a criminal trial. Nonetheless, the chances are that the prosecution will lose in the criminal trials. In case of this eventuality, your lawyer will work relentlessly to develop a solid case in court and that way you be very much close to your freedom and stress-free life.

Hiring an attorney for federal grand jury subpoena comes with a number of privileges. A lawyer will definitely add a lot of value with regard to discrediting the prosecution evidence. He/she will feel the heat of the jury on your behalf. Even though the proceeding may be less formal having legal representation at this stage will significantly affect the outcome of the direction your cases. At this point, it vital that do a background check to establish the competence, history, and skills of your lawyer. Do not just hire and ‘any criminal lawyer.’

Here three main reasons why you should consider having an attorney on your side in a federal grand jury subpoena.

First of all, is that the lawyer will take through probable questions in a grand jury proceeding. In case it is a subpoena for documents, the lawyer will assist in determining or identifying whether they are any privilege issues in the document or expected testimony. If they are any, the lawyer will help you go through them during the entire grand jury process.

Secondly, is that the lawyer will give regular updates on the investigation status. He/ she will work keep you posted on the direction of the investigation by the prosecution. This will in a big way reduce stress and help you focus on your daily life without much worry.

The attorney will work precisely to help you understand your role and responsibility with regard to the investigation procedures. Additionally, he /she will provide you will a clear status of your criminal investigations.

Lastly, the attorney will assume a logistics function. Logistics are basically procedures that needed to be followed as far as the grand jury and court trial processes are concerned. For example, if there are any document submissions to be done, then the lawyer will be there to make sure that is done. At the same time, the attorney will ensure all the processes are cost-effective, law-abiding, and as per the provisions of the prosecution and those of the grand jury subpoena.

All these functions will provide for a smooth grand jury subpoena proceedings, and it will in a big way positively affect its outcome. In addition to this, the lawyer may address issues concerning scheduling problems or other issues that may be pressing you. If you need to reach out to the prosecution, the lawyer can reach out to the team on your behalf instead of doing it yourself.

Hiring a lawyer will add value to your proceedings if your freedom is a priority, hiring a lawyer at this stage is highly recommendable if you want to a chance to clears your name.

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