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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

The following is a list of our frequently asked questions.


What is the difference between a misdemeanor and a felony?
A misdemeanor is not as serious an offense, and it usually only carries a maximum sentence of one year in county jail. On the other hand, a felony is a very serious crime that may carry a sentence of over one year in state prison. Felonies can result in life imprisonment or even the death penalty.
Do I need an attorney at my arraignment?
YES! Although many people believe they may be able to handle this hearing without the presence of a criminal lawyer, it is very helpful to have a criminal lawyer there defending you. A criminal defense attorney may be able to lower your bail or even negotiate to have you released on your own recognizance.
Can I just have my attorney represent me, so I don't have to show up?
There are stages of the criminal process where you do not need to appear. However it is very important to check with your attorney before you decide to be absent. If you are not able to appear you must contact your attorney or the court clerk and inform them of your situation. Please contact our criminal law firm and discuss your case so that we may determine whether or not your appearance is necessary at your next court date. read more.

Common terms used in Ohio criminal cases:


Money paid to the court to ensure that an accused person makes all the required court appearances. If you miss an appearance the money may be forfeited, a warrant issued for your arrest and/or additional criminal charges (Failure to Appear) may be filed.
Most often a defendant's first court appearance, in which the defendant is formally asked to respond to the crimes charged, generally by pleading guilty, not guilty or no contest (see the definition below). Sometimes arraignments are done via video conferencing. Often the setting of bail or other conditions of release take place at the arraignment. Additionally, the court may address other issues such as protection orders (in domestic violence cases), vehicle impoundment and license suspension matters (especially in DUI Cases). read more
The following is a list of a few helpful website links
- The Law and You - Criminal Law (OSBA)
- Check your driving records (BMV)
- Ohio Prison Directory
- Columbus Bar Association
- Ohio Police Department Directory

1188 South High Street * Columbus, Ohio 43206  *  614-443-2494 *

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