Do I need to stop smoking marijuana now? Or can I wait to see if I end up on probation?
Yes. Despite evolving laws concerning both medical and recreational use of marijuana in other states, it is still 100% illegal in Texas. YOU NEED TO STOP SMOKING MARIJUANA IMMEDIATELY ONCE YOU ARE CHARGED WITH A CRIME.
Continuing to smoke marijuana may seriously affect our ability to successfully handle your criminal case. Oftentimes, a clean urinalysis test may be a requirement of a beneficial plea bargain, including a possible dismissal of your case. In addition, failing a test could lead to you being assessed jail time as a condition of probation, sometimes 30 days or more.
My case was dismissed, so there is nothing on my record, right?
Wrong. In Texas, NOTHING DISAPPEARS FROM A PERSON’S CRIMINAL HISTORY UNLESS ACTION IS TAKEN TO REMOVE IT. The method for erasing all official records of an arrest and criminal case is known as an Expunction. In other circumstances, where an expunction is not possible, we may be able to have your records sealed and made unavailable to the public through an Order of Nondisclosure.
We do not charge for consultations to determine whether or not you are eligible for an Expunction or an Order of Nondisclosure.
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What is the difference between and “expunction” and an “order of nondisclosure”?
An expunction erases records of an arrest – meaning all official records held by law enforcement and the courts are destroyed and no longer available anywhere.
An order of nondisclosure orders agencies holding records not to disclose them except to certain listed agencies, mostly state licensing agencies – the records are in effect “sealed” for most purposes. However, the records still exist and can be used against you in the future if you get in trouble with the law again or apply for a job that requires licensing by an agency excluded from the non-disclosure requirements.
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I’ve scheduled an appointment with you and would like my wife/husband/girlfriend/boyfriend/mom/dad, etc. to sit with me during our meeting. That’s OK, right?
No. At least it is not OK while we are speaking about the actual facts of your case. All communications that occur between an attorney and a client (or potential client) are covered by the attorney-client privilege which allows the client to prevent the disclosure of confidential communications made for the purpose of facilitating professional legal services. The key here is that the communications must be confidential – if there is anyone else in the room while we are speaking about your case, for example a significant other or family member, then these communications are no longer deemed to be confidential and the attorney-client privilege is waived.
A common example we encounter is when a potential client accused of Assault – Family violence comes to our office and wants their wife or girlfriend, whom they are accused of assaulting, to sit in on our meeting. If we were to allow that, and the wife or girlfriend were to later decide to tell the District Attorney everything talked about in our office, there is nothing we could do about it.
Once we have talked with you about the facts of your case, we will allow your family member to be present for the rest of the meeting when we talk about potential solutions and outcomes for your case.