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Criminal Arraignment in California


What is an Arraignment in California?

An arraignment is a court appearance at which the defendant is informed of the charges against him, given a copy of the accusatory pleading and given an opportunity to enter a plea of either guilty or not guilty. It is the defendant's first court appearance. If the defendant is charged with a bailable offense, the court must set bail unless bail has already been set.

When is the Arraignment in California?

Time for arraignment: The time at which the arraignment must occur depends largely upon the custodial status of the defendant. If the defendant is in custody on a felony or misdemeanor, the arraignment must take place within 48 hours after the arrest, not including weekends and court holidays.

Must I Personally Appear at an Arraignment in California?

Personal appearance: A defendant charged with a felony is required to appear in person at the arraignment and most other court appearances, unless the defendant executes a written waiver of appearance in open court.

Most misdemeanor defendants may appear by counsel at all stages of the case, including the arraignment However, if the defendant is charged with a misdemeanor involving domestic violence or violation of a protective order, he must appear in person at the arraignment.

If you have been charged in a crime in California, contact Orange County Criminal Defense Attorney Scott Hughes to discuss your arraignment and the charges against you at 714-423-6928.

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