Now that you have been released, you will attend court for your first appearance. It is advisable that you attend with a lawyer. Once you attend court with your criminal defence lawyer in Toronto, you may sign a document which then permits your lawyer to continue to attend court for you without you having to be there. Speak to your criminal lawyer about doing this so that you don’t have to continue to miss work or school. This document is called a Designation of Counsel.
You and/or your criminal defence lawyer will continue to go to court until you receive your paperwork “disclosure.” Once you receive the disclosure, your lawyer will schedule a crown pre-trial. A pre-trial is a meeting with the crown attorney to discuss your case to see how long your matter will likely take in court, how many witnesses may be called for the crown or the defence, whether expert evidence will be called, and what sentence the crown may be seeking should you be found guilty. At this stage, the crown will likely tell the lawyer what he/she will be seeking should the accused wish to plead guilty.