What Is The Process After Someone Has Been Arrested On MIP Charges?

A traditional arrest for a minor in possession charge is where someone is placed into handcuffs, taken to a sub-station and then taken to the county jail. That’s what most people are familiar with. A person is usually given a bond and then a court date where they have to return back to Florida for court. A lawyer who knows what they are doing can excuse their client from most, if not all, court appearances. About 99 % of my cases are handled without court appearances at all and yet we are able to have charges dismissed.

The second way that people can be arrested is if they’re given what’s known as a Criminal Summons, which is a notice to appear in court. That’s the one that is actually more deceptive because people do not realize they have been arrested and they tend to think of it in terms of something simple like a traffic ticket. They often don’t want to tell their parents and that’s a big deal because this fear of telling parents often causes them to make bad legal decisions that cause problems getting into graduate school, finding employment or lead to license suspensions later on.

Are Most People Surprised At The Long Term Ramifications Of A Minor In Possession Conviction?

Most people who are charged with MIP are stunned with the long term consequences once they have been educated. I also think that they are manipulated by the internet. If you read a lot of defense lawyer websites, it makes it sound like these attorneys never lose, and if you read government websites, they make it sound like you can never win.

The government is heavily promoting “diversion programs” that come so loaded with conditions such as substance abuse classes, drug and alcohol testing, treatment, probation like restrictions, time eating community service hours, etc. It makes it almost impossible for people to complete or do perfectly, and on top of that, it’s not nearly as good as what I normally obtain for my clients in the form of a negotiated dismissal without unnecessary burdens. If someone doesn’t do everything exactly, perfectly correct, they are kicked out of diversion, forced to go back to court, and in some counties, sentenced to jail.

The Suitable Time To Involve An Attorney In A Minor In Possession Case

The general rule is if you have been arrested, then you need an attorney. At every point in the process, judges are pointing out that people have the right to an attorney and if they cannot afford one, one will be appointed for them.

For people charged with MIP, filling out a Public Defender application can result in getting charged with felony. Most people don’t know that because when filling out a public defender application, it’s not just their income, it’s also their parent’s income if they’re claimed as a dependent on tax forms. Most parents of university students claim their children as exemptions while completing their education. Yet the students don’t know this, and this can cause their case to blow up in their face with explosive consequences.

Each year, we have many young people trying to keep the arrest or notice to appear from a criminal summons away from their parents and so they apply for a public defender. They then come to find out, they’re going to be then charged with a felony for filing a false public defender application because parental income was not factored in the equation. The shorter solution is to call an attorney immediately.

How Long Does A Young Person Arrested For MIP Have To Stay In Jail?

When someone is arrested for MIP, they normally get what we loosely call a “booking officer bond”. In other words, they’re not held overnight to see a judge. If they are held overnight to see a judge, then what will happen if they are in either Okaloosa, Walton or Santa Rosa is they will see the judge on video. The judge will not be at the jail; the judge will be at the courthouse.

If a lawyer is retained, then a lawyer can argue for a bond at that time. However, if someone has been given the summons instead, then bond is not an issue.

Disclaimer: This article is in response to questions frequently asked of Mr. Cobb and is an unedited dictation transcript. Just like talk to text on your smartphone, there may be misspelled words or sentence fragments.

For more information on Process After Arrest On MIP Charges, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (850) 669-5882 today.

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