Generally speaking, you should plan on staying at least three hours for your arraignment and in crowded courts you may be required to stay all day, until approximately 4:30 p.m. The courtroom is likely to be crowded and it may be a while before the judge gets to your case. Be early so that you will have enough time to find out where to go and to make sure you do not miss your case being called.
If you have an attorney before your arraignment date, talk with your attorney in advance. The more your attorney understands about your case, the more he/she can help you.
It is helpful to bring all of the papers you have about your case to court. Bring a pencil and paper to court with you or an item or device on which to record information. You may need to take notes about your case or write down court dates. It is your responsibility to know when to return to court if your case is continued (or postponed) until another date.
You are absolutely not required to bring cash to court, but having cash available to pay fines or court costs may be helpful to avoid returning to court on another date to make such payments. Although each case is unique, a reasonable estimate to cover court costs or fines is $250.00.
Part 1: Before Arraignment
- What happens if I am arrested?
- What are my rights?
- Can I be released after I am booked at the police station?
- What happens if I receive a complaint and notice of criminal charges and a date to appear in court in the mail (and I am not arrested)?
- What is a show cause hearing?
- What is the difference between criminal charges in superior court and criminal charges in district court?
- What is an arraignment date?
- What should I do before I go to court?
- Part 2: Arraignment or First Appearance in Court