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What to do if You Have Been Arrested

If you can make a bond (money to secure your release), then you will be released from jail, but only if you have no other holds. (A hold is a detainer placed on you by another governmental agency which requires you be held pending clearance of the hold. Example: If you had unpaid traffic tickets you could be held in jail until they were paid or you served them out withjai] time.) If you cannot make a bond or do not qualify for pretrial release), then you will remain in jail while your case is pending.

If You Are Free on Bond

In many courts, if you have been able to make a bond, then you will be expected to hire an attorney to represent you. However, in some courts, if you can prove that you are indigent unable to afford to hire an attorney, then you may request the court to provide you with a court-appointed lawyer.

The court itself must pay for the services of the court-appointed lawyer. The cost of this representation may be passed onto you at a later time, in the form of court fees. A court-appointed lawyer may be either a private lawyer who takes court appointments or may be a public defender. (See Defense Attorney.)

If You Are in Jail

If you are in jail (Incarcerxated and unable to make a bond), you may hire your own attorney or if you are indigent the court will automatically appoint an attorney to represent you. If you are unable to make a bond and are indigent, the court will appoint your lawyer files a case against you. This may take up to 72 hours.

If You Are Not a U.S. Citizen

If you are arrested and you are not a U.S. Citizen, in most cases the INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service) will place a hold on you. This hold will keep you in jail, whether or not you are able to make a bond. The way in which your criminal case is handled will directly affect your resident status. This should be one of the main issues you discuss with your attorney. If at all possible, you should seek the advice of an attorney who specializes in immigration issues.

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