While I am always prepared to answer questions about your case, I realize that there are times when you may have more general questions to which you would like an immediate response. To that end, I hope you find the following answers to frequently asked questions helpful.
Criminal defense questions
- I have been charged with a crime. What do I do now?
- My spouse was just arrested. What happens now?
- What is a plea bargain?
Family law questions
- I have been divorced for a while and would like to change some of the provisions in the divorce decree. If my ex and I agree, would the changes be valid?
- My ex is behind on alimony and child support. What recourse do I have?
- I am the custodial parent. Can I deny visitation?
Contact me today
Everyone needs an attorney eventually. My law firm, The Law Offices of William F. Todd, Jr. P.C., stands ready to represent you in your criminal defense, DUI and traffic violation, or family law case. Call my office at 770-679-2444 or contact me online to discuss your legal issue and learn more about how I can assist you during this difficult time.
Criminal defense FAQs
Do not provide any information other than your name and address. If you discuss the allegations with anyone other than your criminal law attorney, you may accidentally incriminate yourself and help the police build a case against you.
My spouse was just arrested. What happens now?
There are specific time frames and procedures that the court and prosecution must adhere to after a suspect has been arrested. The case is brought before a judge who may issue any necessary warrants and set bond for a court appearance. If you are unable to post bail, your spouse (the defendant) may be held in jail until his or her court date. If bond is posted, he or she may be released until the arraignment.
Arraignments typically occur within 24 hours of an arrest or the first available date if the arrest was on a weekend or holiday. During the arraignment, the defendant is officially informed of the offense or offenses with which he or she is charged, advised of his or her constitutional rights and of the potential legal penalties. At this time he or she enters a plea of guilty or not guilty, bail may be reviewed and a date set for the next hearing.
What is a plea bargain?
If you are facing criminal charges, a plea bargain may be your best option to avoid jail time or other serious penalties. Essentially, it is an agreement between the prosecution and the defendant in which the prosecution agrees to reduce or dismiss certain charges against the defendant in exchange for the defendant entering a plea of guilty or no contest.
Family law FAQs
I have been divorced for a while and would like to change some of the provisions in the divorce decree. If my ex and I agree, would the changes be valid?
After your divorce, you might find it necessary or desirable to modify one or more of the stipulations in your divorce decree, property settlement, or custody and support arrangements. You must follow proper procedure if you want that modification or set of modifications to be valid. An experienced family law attorney can work with you to ensure your desired changes are valid.
My ex is behind on spousal and child support. What recourse do I have?
You can go to the court clerk’s office in the court that ordered child support and request the clerk issue a garnishment against the supporting parent’s wages. To do this, you need to know your ex’s place of employment, address and Social Security number. If your ex is at least one month behind, the court sends a garnishment to the employer and the support will be taken out of his or her paycheck. You could also go after your ex’s property, but this is a longer process and might not be as satisfying, since cars and homes are often leased and mortgaged. Another option is to file a petition for contempt and get an order to show cause why the payments are not being made. This puts your ex back in court. A skilled family law attorney can review the options with you and guide you to the best solution for your needs.
I am the custodial parent. Can I deny visitation?
The purpose of visitation rights is for children of a divorced couple to understand they have two parents who are entitled to love their children and be loved in return. If the children come back from a weekend with their noncustodial parent and are upset or tell you they do not want to go anymore, that is not reason to deny visitation unless their health and welfare are endangered by the visitation. If you are having a disagreement with your ex or harbor ill feelings, that is not reason to deny visitation. However, the noncustodial parent is entitled to reasonable visitation. That means if he or she wants to see your child in the middle of the night or is drunk or stoned, you do not have to permit visitation.