Archive for February, 2009

What happens at the arraignment for my Tennessee DUI charge?


In Tennessee, an arraignment, often referred to as an “initial appearance,” is conducted by a magistrate or judge. The underlying purpose of this appearance is for the magistrate or judge to:

1.    Inform you of the offense(s) with which you have been charged;

2.    Inform you of your right to a lawyer in every stage of the proceedings;   and

3.    To schedule your next court appearance on a mutually convenient date for you, the involved lawyers, and the witnesses. An arraignment generally takes place in the General Sessions Court before the preliminary examination (often referred to as a “preliminary hearing”) or trial; or before a formal motion hearing in your case if the case is pending in a court of record such as Criminal Court or Circuit Court.

Because your lawyer must be available at the forthcoming court appearance which is scheduled at the arraignment, it is very important to hire a Tennessee DUI lawyer to appear with you at this initial appearance.