Can a solicitor assist me at the police station?
Anyone detained by the police has a right to a solicitor and advice free of charge, at any time of day, regardless of wealth, age or nationality. Having a solicitor or legal representative present will ensure that your interests are looked after and that you are treated fairly.
A police interview is also known as an interview under caution. Interviews under caution take place after arrest or by invitation (known as a voluntary interview). Even if the interview is by invitation it is important to ensure that you obtain legal advice and representation. Other agencies are also allowed to conduct interviews under caution. Please contact me now if you find yourself in this situation.
Having a solicitor present means that the police, or interviewing agency, disclose what the allegation is and the reasons that they suspect the person being interviewed of being involved in the alleged offence. The police, or interviewing agency, are also required to provide sufficient disclosure to enable the solicitor to advise the interviewee. This information is unlikely to be provided if the person being interviewed is unrepresented.
Post arrest the police will release on bail or release under investigation. In the former, a bail date will be given on which the person is required to return to the police station. It may be that further interviews will be required. In the latter, the release is unconditional while the investigation continues. It could be several months, or longer, before the outcome is known.
The police, and some other agencies, have a power of arrest. Others do not and will invite a person in on a voluntary basis. Failure to co-operate can result in them carrying on with the investigation or passing the matter to the police for an arrest/to pursue.
The solicitor can advise on whether the person being interviewed should answer questions, remain silent, or hand in a written statement. The right advice and decision at this early stage can be crucial to a case.
Legal aid is available in all cases where it is a police interview under caution. In other cases it is subject to means, where not eligible I can assist with fixed fees or where preferred reasonable hourly rates.
I can help with the following interviews:
- Council / Local Authority
- DVSA / VOSA
- DWP – benefits & housing benefit
- Environment Agency
- Job Centre
- National Crime Agency
- Serious Fraud Office
- Voluntary interviews