When you find yourself facing criminal charges in Colorado, your freedom and future are at risk. When you work with an attorney, whether they are a public defender or a professional that you pay out of pocket, you hope to benefit from their expertise by avoiding a conviction or limiting the consequences of the charges on your life.
Sometimes, your attorney takes over entirely, assuming the responsibility to show up to court on your behalf and communicate to the judge and the prosecutor. Unfortunately, attorneys can and do make mistakes with scheduling that mean that they could miss important hearings.
If you face criminal charges in Colorado and you do not personally go to court because your attorney will represent you for a hearing, their failure to arrive could affect your freedom and even the potential success of your criminal defense strategy.
Colorado has rules that punish no-show criminal defendants
Failing to show up for court is a big mistake. Not only does it show a lack of respect for the charges against you, but it could make the courts worried that you present a flight risk. You have an obligation to be present, either in person or through your attorney.
The state does often take punitive action against those who do not show up for their day in court. Specifically, the judge could issue a bench warrant for your arrest for not appearing as ordered in a criminal case.
Even if you did not intentionally fail to arrive but instead expected that your attorney would show up as they promised to, you could be the one facing criminal consequences for someone else’s incompetence. You may also find that you now have an upward battle when it comes to getting the judge to take a sympathetic view of your circumstances.
Not showing up the court could be a form of legal malpractice
Your attorney has influence over your freedom and your future. You expect them to act in your best interest and to do what you pay them for, such as being there for your court date. A no-show attorney could hurt your case. It’s also worth noting that their behavior could be indicative of broader issues and how they approach their legal practice.
If you have faced criminal consequences or an unfair conviction because of inadequate representation or other forms of legal malpractice, you may need to consider bringing a claim against the lawyer involved.