September 24, 2019 | Blog
Finding yourself in trouble with the law is not something you ever want. One poor choice may lead to criminal charges and changes in how you live your life.
If you have to go through a court proceeding, you may want to look at your options. You may have the right for a jury to hear your case, or you may want to have just a judge listen and decide. A bench trial allows a judge alone to hear and decide on the consequences. Discover three reasons why you may want to opt for a bench trial over a jury.
1. A judge’s record affords preparation
When going before a jury, a lawyer has limited information to work from. While jury research is fairly common practice in legal circles, it may not give too much confidence in how one individual may affect the other 11. With a bench trial, however, a lawyer can research the judge’s prior actions on similar cases and mount a defense from there. More information on how a judge views certain offenses is beneficial.
2. Pretrial filings may help sway the judge
A trial entails a copious number of legal documents. Certain filings are due at various times prior to getting before the judge. These pretrial filings may help your attorney get a feel for how a judge may rule, and it provides an opportunity for the defense to move the judge’s viewpoint in a positive direction.
3. You can talk to an audience
The judge is not the only person worth getting to know. In the judicial system, the judge relies on support teams for various reasons. Law clerks often hold a significant amount of sway with the judge, as they do much of the legwork and research. Therefore, it is important that you also consider how these people may view the crime.
A bench trial is a viable option if you find yourself in a legal bind and heading to court. Your attorney’s advice on how to proceed may include this route.