Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What should I do at arraignment?

A. The best course of action is to enter a plea of "not guilty", at least until you have a chance to talk to a lawyer. Under no circumstances should you enter a plea of "guilty" or "no contest" without a thorough understanding of the ramifications. It is much wiser to plead "not guilty" and resolve the case later when the exact penalty has been negotiated.

Q. What happens if I plead guilty at arraignment?

A. This can be a disastrous decision. You are essentially placing your future in the hands of whatever judge or magistrate happens to be hearing arraignments that day.

The Judge or Magistrate may very well accept all accusations as true. Essentially, you are giving up any chance or negotiating a favorable resolution. Not only it is unpredictible, but most Judges or Magistrates will not allow you to withdraw your plea in light of a harsh sentence.

Q. Will I upset the judge by pleading "not guilty?"

A. No. Most judges respect the fact that people hire a lawyer to handle their case, as it makes the entire process much smoother. Defendants without lawyers and lawyers who are not very experienced tend to clog up the system to the dismay of the judges.

Contact us. We can explain to you the pros and cons of pleading guilty (or not guilty) so that you will understand all the consequences of your decision. These decisions sometimes impact people for the rest of their lives, so being well informed is vital.


The website is designed for general information only. Any information on this site is not to be construed as formal legal advice from a criminal defense lawyer, a DUI lawyer, a family law lawyer or wills, probate, trusts and estate planning lawyer, nor formation of a lawyer/client relationship. Persons accessing this site are encouraged to seek personal advice regarding their individual legal issues.

The attorneys in our law firm primarily service Portage County courts (Ravenna and Kent), and Summit County courts (Akron, Stow, Barberton). Cases in all other courts in North East Ohio, including Cuyahoga County courts (Cleveland, Garfield Heights, Bedford, Parma, Rocky River etc...) are handled under specific terms and conditions.