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Going to Court -What are My Rights?

Discussion in 'Criminal Law Forum' started by mary08, 6 July 2014.

  1. mary08

    mary08 Member

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    Hi
    I will be attending court for owing money to Centrelink. I have a court hearing in August and I don't know my rights. Do I have to have a lawyer present for my court hearing? And I just like to know what will happened for owing money to Centrelink?
     
  2. John R

    John R Well-Known Member

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    Hi Mary08,
    1. Which court are you required to attend?
    2. What have you been charged with?
     
  3. mary08

    mary08 Member

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    I am attending parramatta court on the 12 of August.
    I have been charge with not declaring my full income whilst receiving single parent income from centerlink.
    Now I owe them money and they are taking me to court for it. I don't know what should I do.
     
  4. james50071

    james50071 Guest

    Mary08,

    I strongly recommend you contact your personal lawyer or Legal Aid, requesting representation for your own benefit.

    "I don't know my rights." - As you said above, this is precisely why I recommend a lawyer.

    This matter could turn serious although it is crucial for you to remain calm at all times. Do not feel intimidated when you go to court, and above all - be honest.
     
  5. mary08

    mary08 Member

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    I don't have a personal lawyer. As I could not afford it. I will contact a legal aid for my rights. I will agree with everything the judge will say to me. I'm just wondering if I need a lawyer to represent me or could I just go there by myself? I am nervous as this would be the first time for me. Could I go jail for something like this?
     
  6. Toqual

    Toqual Well-Known Member

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    Hi Mary08,

    It is I james50071 (New Account).

    There is no issue if you do not have a personal lawyer. As stated before, I strongly recommend you contact Legal Aid and check if you are eligible. I suggest you begin by contacting LawAccess at 1300 888 529 and they will provide assistance over the phone. The Local Court can give a maximum sentence of two years imprisonment per offence, and five years imprisonment all together; typically they issue fines. Depending on the location of your hearing (Local or District court, as I believe Parramatta has both.), the verdict differs. Of course you could represent yourself, although as stated above, lawyers have significantly higher knowledge of the Law and could benefit you greatly. In Court, legal terminology is commonly used and you may fail to understand, in this scenario - you must express your confusion to the Magistrate, or Judge.

    I urge you to contact LawAccess at 1300 888 529 to gain a greater understanding of your case.
     

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