Criminal cases in Canada can be complicated for a variety of reasons. These cases take lots of hard work to prepare and present, and criminal law in Canada is also a very complex field. If you choose to defend yourself, you might not be fully aware of all the necessary steps to take when presenting your own defence, and can risk missing critical deadlines and opportunities that may change the course of your case. Very few people choose to defend themselves in court because of the complexity of the process and the many pitfalls that you could run into along the way.
Having access to the support of a skilled criminal lawyer is the best way to make sure that your criminal case is handled correctly from start to finish. You will want the best chance to secure a reduced sentence or to have your charges dropped, but you will be much less likely to secure this outcome without the support of a lawyer.
Understand the Law
One of the biggest stumbling blocks when it comes to defending yourself in court is that the law is complicated, and lawyers spend years learning how it works. To support yourself in a criminal case, you will need to learn enough about the law to represent yourself, which will be very difficult as you will have limited time to prepare your case, and there will be things that you will encounter during the case that you have never heard of before.
Always be cautious about assuming that you can figure out how to present a case to a judge and jury. This is a complex process, and one that you should not take lightly. While the Canadian Judicial Council is committed to the idea of people being able to present their own cases in court, even the resources offered with their support might not be enough to help you in court. Make sure that you look at all the resources very carefully and consider if you think that you can make the most of them and support yourself in court.
Representing your own case can be very hard, because you are so close to the situation. If you become overwhelmed with emotion, it can be very hard to make logical decisions in your case. You will want to be sure that you can keep your emotions under control if you are going to present your own case in court.
Emotion is often one of the biggest challenges for people trying to represent themselves in court. You might feel angry at the people who were involved in your case, or maybe you are worried about ending up in jail. All of the emotions that you feel can lead to you working against yourself by getting too upset to present logical arguments during your trial.
Court Procedures and Paperwork
Criminal cases require lots of paperwork, and you will need to familiarize yourself with court procedure during the lead-up to the trial, as well as when you are actually in court. New lawyers are not allowed to try cases in court without help from a senior lawyer, and even these are trained professionals who have been to years of school.
All of the documents and evidence that need to be filed related to your case require lots of knowledge about the procedure. You may risk missing important steps along the way, as missing documents and filing dates alone can lead to your case being unsuccessful. If you are going to proceed with representing yourself, you will want to make sure that you do a lot of research about the various procedural steps and documentation requirements related to your case.
Lack of Experience
The lack of experience that you have with legal processes can lead to your case being unsuccessful, and you might also cheat yourself out of the possibility of getting your charges dismissed. Being unaware of mistakes that the other side of the case has made can also lead to the failure of your case.
Lawyers spend years being trained to look for flaws in the case that is being presented against you. They also have years of training in legal citations and other information that needs to be presented to a judge and jury to help explain your side of the case. You will not have this kind of experience backing you if you represent yourself.
Danger of Self-Incrimination
One of the biggest risks that you can expose yourself to when you represent your own case is that you will accidentally incriminate yourself as you are trying to explain your side of the story. Sharing too much information, or presenting information in the wrong way, can make you look guilty even if you are not. You do not want to risk that you will present the facts in such a way that you actually make yourself look worse.
Working with a skilled lawyer is critical for the success of your criminal case. You will want to be sure that you find an experienced criminal lawyer to help you to seek the right resolution to your trial. Representing people in court takes years of training, and a professional lawyer with years of experience is the only safe choice for your case.
If you need representation for your Canadian criminal case, reach out to our team at Vilkhov Law today. We will schedule your consultation so that you can get the representation you deserve in your criminal case.