FAQs

If you have been charged with a criminal offence in Ontario, or if you have reason to believe you are under suspicion of criminal activity, you no doubt have many questions. Below, we provide some basic answers to common inquiries about defending against criminal charges to get you started in the right direction. Contact an experienced criminal defence lawyer at CUGELMAN & EISEN for more information.


Do I need a criminal lawyer?

It is not strictly required by law, but as a practical matter — the answer is a resounding YES! If you are facing any criminal offence it is essential to receive legal advice from qualified, competent criminal defence counsel at the very earliest opportunity.

Few lay people have the expertise and skills necessary to represent themselves effectively in legal proceedings. Many self-represented people are convicted in our courts on a daily basis in cases where qualified, competent, legal counsel may well have assisted them to mount a successful defence. Some people make the mistake of choosing to represent themselves, believing that because they are truly innocent that will be all that is required to ensure their acquittal, because the wise judge will surely see the truth and act accordingly. Unfortunately, in our court system the adage that “the truth shall set you free ” often does not prevail. Bear in mind that once you are charged the job of the police and Crown prosecutor, many of whom have very considerable experience in their own right, is to present your case to the court as forcefully as possible with the goal of securing your conviction and punishment.

When you retain the criminal lawyers at CUGELMAN & EISEN to represent you, you will have the best possible allies in your corner – a highly skilled and competent defence team that has vast experience handling cases like your own, who can ensure that your rights are protected, and who are committed to assisting you to the best of their ability. They understand the legal considerations involved in your case and are familiar with the procedures and practices that apply in criminal trials; and they are skilled in working within the rules of the criminal justice system to manage your defence and work toward the best possible outcome for you, whether that means a full acquittal, or a plea bargain to minimize charges and punishment.


How much does a lawyer cost?

CUGELMAN & EISEN offers a free half-hour initial consultation to review your matter with you, after which you will receive a fee quote. Legal fees can vary widely, depending upon the nature of the charges you are facing, the number of court attendances required prior to trial or plea, the time required to prepare for trial, and the length of the trial itself. In many cases we will be able to provide a block fee quote for all services involved in your case. You will know ahead of time what your fees will be. In most cases an initial retainer will be required, the amount of which will depend on the complexity of the case. Payment plans are available. You will have time to consider whether retaining the firm is the right choice for you. Keep in mind that because your freedom, finances, and reputation are on the line, choosing a lawyer should not be based solely on cost, but on the question of which lawyer has the skills, expertise, and experience necessary to protect your rights and obtain the best possible outcome for you. You need to choose a lawyer who you can trust, and with whom you can have a comfortable and productive working relationship.


How do I find a criminal lawyer?

There are many criminal defence lawyers in the Barrie community and across Ontario, but that doesn’t mean that they are all the same. There are many ways to find the right criminal lawyer for you. Research the lawyer on the internet. Ask lawyers practicing in other areas of law in the same jurisdiction who they would recommend to defend a criminal case. Is the lawyer you are considering recognized by the Law Society of Upper Canada as a Specialist in Criminal Law? Once you have identified a prospective choice set up an initial consultation; ask questions about the lawyer’ s experience handling cases like your own. Be forthright about your case. You need to be comfortable providing your lawyer with as many facts as possible so that he is in a position to give you meaningful advice; and you need to feel confident in having this person serve as your representative until your case is finally concluded.


CUGELMAN & EISEN : Barrie Criminal Lawyers Who Will Fight For You

Bernard Cugelman and Mitchell Eisen have more than 60 years of combined experience in all aspects of criminal defence. They have successfully conducted countless trials, bail hearings, Charter of Rights motions, preliminary inquiries, and appeals at all levels of Court in the Province of Ontario, including the Ontario Court of Appeal, the Superior Court of Justice, the Ontario Court of Justice, and the Ontario Provincial Offences Court. They have built their outstanding reputation on hard work, an emphasis upon listening to the concerns of their clients and answering those concerns, fearless representation, and an unwavering dedication to excellence in criminal defence work. Today, CUGELMAN & EISEN is considered the leading criminal law firm in the Barrie area and Simcoe County. Their practice extends to all areas of criminal defence, young offenders, and provincial and federal regulatory offences. Both Bernard Cugelman and Mitchell Eisen have been recognized as Certified Specialists in Criminal Law by the Law Society of Upper Canada, the body which regulates lawyers in Ontario. They defend all criminal charges including impaired driving, domestic assault, sexual assault, drugs, fraud, firearms and weapons, property offences, and homicide cases, to highlight but a few. As the criminal law is constantly changing and evolving, both lawyers dedicate themselves to keeping abreast of the latest developments in Canadian criminal law by way of constant, ongoing legal research and attendance at legal conferences, which are essential to providing the best possible defence for every client. They can assist you through every step of your criminal case, from police investigations, bail, and pre-trial hearings, to trials, plea negotiations, and appeals. The law offices of CUGELMAN & EISEN are located at 89 Collier St. Suite 100, Barrie, Ontario L4M 1H2, or they can be reached by calling (705) 721-1888.

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