Coming prepared to your first meeting with a lawyer is very important. Being prepared and informed means that you will know what questions you need answered and what questions the lawyer will expect you to answer.

It’s important that you bring all documents you received from the police or the prosecutor. Any other relevant documents, photos and witness information should also be brought to the meeting.

It’s often also useful in a criminal case to prepare a written chronology or summary of your involvement. If you decide to bring a document like this to your first meeting with the lawyer, please ensure that any written documents that you create about your case are clearly marked at the top with, “PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL – FOR MY LAWYER”. This ensures that your documents will not be used against you at trial in the event that they are lost, stolen, or confiscated by the police.

It’s best not to discuss your case or show your documents to anyone until you have a chance to meet with a lawyer. Anyone you speak to about your case may become a witness against you (voluntarily or involuntarily at the request of the prosecutor). Only what is disclosed in private to your lawyer is protected from potentially becoming evidence against you in your case.

The best way to approach the situation, understand your rights and formulate a winning defence is to speak to a lawyer who has knowledge and experience in the areas that most affect you.