Do I have to pay for a solicitor at the police station?
Interview at police station
If you are suspected of committing a criminal offence, you may be interviewed by the Police at the preliminary stage of their investigations. Cases can be won or lost at the Police interview stage and it is easy for an unrepresented suspect to make a mistake in their answers to questions, which they may live to regret at a later trial.
Detained at police station
If you are detained at the Police Station under arrest, or if you have been called to attend a voluntary interview about a criminal offence which is to be conducted under caution, you are entitled to free independent legal advice no matter what your financial circumstances are.
Legal advice at the police station
David Gray Solicitors represent people charged with any criminal offence, from minor motoring offences to the most serious offences of murder and manslaughter and we are at hand to help offenders at the Police Station 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. We have a police station rota staffed by our qualified solicitors so that we can have someone available to come out to the police station and advise you at all times of the day or night. One of the rights you will be given is to have a solicitor present for the interview and be told that you can speak to the solicitor on the phone. If you are unsure, you have nothing to lose in speaking to a solicitor on the phone and asking them any questions you may have about your case and whether you should have a solicitor at the police station. Invariably you will be told it is in your best interests and that someone will be available to come to the station and advise you.
What happens if you don’t get legal representation
Often we have to speak to defendants who have been charged with offences following their interview with the police where they didn’t ask for a solicitor. In our experience those who don’t ask for a solicitor do much worse in interview than those who do. Sometimes we are told that the police said it would take hours for a solicitor to get there; that isn’t the case and we are required to be at a police station within 45 minutes of being asked to attend. We are usually told to arrive at the time the police will be ready so there is no delay to the interview as a result of having a solicitor present.
One clear and distinct advantage you will have if you ask for a solicitor is that you will be aware of what evidence the police have in advance. The police are required to give disclosure to the solicitor attending the interview, which will then be discussed with you in advance of the formally recorded interview.
Police station representative
Our qualified Police Station Representatives will be in a position to advise you on the best way to proceed with your interview, whether that is to provide no comment to the officer’s questions, or to give a verbal or written account. This advice is given with a view of building any potential defence that you may have at the very outset of proceedings. It may even be that we are able to persuade the Police to take no further action against you, or secure an out of Court disposal for you.