At Peace Legal we understand that facing any criminal charge is a distressing situation to find yourself in.
A criminal conviction can obviously have serious repercussions and it is therefore important that you receive the correct advice from an experienced solicitor.
Department Specialisms Include:
Vehicle Crime and / or Motoring Offences
Drugs Offences (including large scale production of Cannabis)
Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act proceedings
Representing Defendants with significant Mental Health Issues
Criminal Defence Department
Chris Peace of the Criminal Defence Department here at Peace Legal has been committed to giving a voice to the people of Barnsley and the Dearne Valley for over 30 years.
We represent anyone who seeks our help in a matter before the Criminal Courts or under investigation by the Police without prejudice or judgement and in the strictest of confidence.
At the Police Station
It is the right of every person who is to be interviewed by the Police to receive free and independent legal advice. Peace Legal is committed to providing this advice any time of the day or night, 365 days a year.
It is our strong belief that individuals can be badly prejudiced by not having legal representation in the police station. This is, if anything, more especially true where a person genuinely believes they have done nothing wrong.
Requesting legal advice from Peace Legal will not unduly delay your release (as the police might suggest) but could mean the difference between being released with no charges brought or receiving a damaging criminal conviction.
For more information on our services at any Police Station in South or West Yorkshire please contact our departmental Secretary, Mrs Windsor, on 01226 341111.
Help before you’re charged with a criminal offence
You could get help with a criminal case even if you haven’t been charged with a criminal offence. Peace Legal can give general advice, write letters or get a barrister’s opinion. This type of help is called Advice and Assistance.
You will get Advice and Assistance if you get Income Support, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, the guarantee credit part of Pension Credit or Universal Credit. If you get Working Tax Credit, you might get Advice and Assistance depending on your income and personal circumstances.
If you are not getting one of these benefits or Working Tax Credit, you will only get Advice and Assistance if your income and savings are below a certain amount.
Please speak to us for more advice on your eligibility for advice and assistance.
At the Magistrates Court and Crown Court
Being summonsed or charged to court can be a worrying and stressful experience. Having the right advice and a reassuring presence will make all the difference.
We will listen carefully to your instructions, advise you carefully of the prosecution’s case and the choices available to you with the likely implications or outcomes of those choices. In the Magistrates’ Court we will then speak on your behalf in court ensuring that your case is presented as effectively and strongly as possible. In the Crown Court we will instruct an expert Barrister (Counsel) to speak on your behalf – and work with both you and Counsel to ensure your case is prepared and presented to the highest possible standard.
We hold a Legal Aid Agency Criminal Contract meaning we are authorised to provide services under the Legal Aid Representation Scheme. We are also pleased to offer competitively priced private fee options and would be happy to discuss this with you in more detail.
Click here to find out about a how a Representational Order could help you fund your legal costs.
The laws of the road can seem complicated and confusing however the rules that Councils and the Police must adhere to are strict.
Chris Peace, who is Head of our Criminal Defence department, can provide expert advice in interpreting and defending all allegations of motoring offences.
Contact us today with your query and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
Peace Legal is contracted to the Legal Aid Agency for Criminal Law.
A Representation Order
A Representation Order covers representation by a solicitor and, if necessary, by a barrister in criminal cases.
To qualify for a Representation Order in the magistrates’ court, you must meet certain financial conditions. You’ll automatically meet these conditions if you’re Under 18. Also you’ll automatically meet the conditions if you’re getting Income Support, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, the guarantee credit part of Pension Credit or Universal Credit.
Otherwise, the financial conditions depend on your gross income and how many dependent children you have. If you have no children, you won’t get criminal legal aid in the magistrates’ court if you have a gross income of more than £22,325.
If you do meet the financial conditions, you’ll usually get help with representation in a criminal case in the magistrates’ court, as long as it’s in the interests of justice that you are legally represented. This means, for example, if you are likely to go to prison or lose your job if you are convicted.
In the Crown Court, it will automatically be in the interests of justice that you are legally represented. But you might have to contribute towards the cost of your legal representation from your income or capital.
If you have a disposable income above £283.17 per month, you will have to make five contributions from your income. If you are late paying, you will have to make one extra payment.
If you are found guilty and have capital over £30,000, you may be asked to pay a contribution from your capital.
If you are found not guilty, your payments will be refunded to you.
We are happy to help you prepare an application for Legal Aid, if you are assessed as likely to be eligible, free of charge.