What to do if you Receive a Summons

Receiving a summons can be a very difficult experience because many people are intimidated by the legal system. If a person receives a summons, they should remain calm so that they can take the proper steps to legally protect themselves. The summons should state whether or not a date has been set for the trial in question. A person should look at the charges that are being leveled against them and then contact an appropriately qualified attorney to help with their legal issues. It is imperative that an individual gather all evidence to defend themselves to the best of their ability.

This means that a person should gather all documents connected to the case that they have been summoned to court for. If they have been summoned as a witness, and not as a plaintiff or defendant in a case, it is still a good idea to contact an attorney so that the individual does not implicate himself or herself in any illegal activity by mistake.

Receiving a summons to appear in court can be a very scary because most people are not as legally knowledgeable as they should be. It is always a good idea to consider all of the questions that an individual can be asked and have an honest answer to the question before going into the courtroom.

Sometimes a person that does not have access to enough money to retain a lawyer can qualify for legal aid. It is very important that if a person looking to qualify for legal aid, contact that state agency in charge of legal aid as soon as possible. This is because of the backlog caseload that is present in most states legal aid system.

When possible, a person should also contact the court so that they can find out how they should present themselves before the court from a physical appearance standpoint. Any legal papers pertaining to the case from previous appearances in court should always be brought along to the next court date.

If the summons is in regards to a civil matter, then receipts and documentation will be the difference between success and failure in the case. If the summons is in regards to a criminal matter, having witnesses available to defend the individual’s version of events is extremely important.

It is also a good idea for the individual that has received a summons to have the proper emotional and mental support as they go through the legal process. Many people are often intimidated by going to court for the first time, and this can sometimes lead them to make statements that do not help their cause.

Whenever possible, a person going through a legal proceeding should seek out the opinion of as many legal professionals as possible before planning a course of action.