The Best Ways to Handle Juvenile Charges

May, 2014 by Alma Abell

Minors who get into trouble with the law go through a different process than adults. The legal system works to help rehabilitate young people who may have just made a mistake or poor judgment and ended up getting arrested. The first thing that any parent should do when facing juvenile criminal charges is hire a lawyer. Cincinnati, Ohio has criminal defense lawyers who have the experience and knowledge to help minors navigate the court system, build a case, and fight to get a fair and reasonable judgment. Whether it’s a drug charge, shoplifting charge, or assault charge, hiring a lawyer will insure that the child receives the best representation in court.

Informal Proceedings

Many of the cases that go before the juvenile system are handled informally. This means that the defendant goes before the judge but does not need to go before a jury. This is a common way to handle a first-time offender or a minor offense. Even if a case is handled informally, it’s still a¬†good idea to retain a lawyer in Cincinnati, Ohio before you go before the judge.

Minors who receive an informal proceeding will often hear a lecture from the presiding judge and get one or two of a number of different penalties. Some of those penalties include attending counseling, paying a fine, or performing court ordered community service work.

Formal Proceedings

With a formal proceeding, the juvenile court has decided that the charge is serious enough for the juvenile to be arraigned before the judge. In these situations, it’s best to hire a lawyer. Cincinnati, Ohio has numerous defense attorneys who specialize in juvenile case and will insure that the child receives the necessary rights afforded to him or her under constitutional law.

Minors can opt for a plea deal or go to trial. In many cases, the child is allowed to remain at home with the parents until the sentencing trial. Serious charges may result in the child being retained in a juvenile detention center until the sentencing, and in rare cases minor can be tried as an adult. At the trial, the judge will hear evidence from both sides and make a judgment. Some minors do have to serve time in the detention center, while others will be placed on probation and expected to appear in court regularly so that the judge can insure all terms of the punishment are being met.

To learn more about juvenile criminal law and find a lawyer, Cincinnati, Ohio residents can visit.


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