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Have You Received a Citation to Attend Court?

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Court Citations - Criminal Defence Solicitors Glasgow

If you have received a court citation, it is important you receive legal advice as soon as possible. 

You will be asked to plead Guilty or Not Guilty at the first hearing (Pleading Diet). 

Our solicitors represent accused persons on a daily basis. An appointment can take place at one of our offices, or an arrangement can be made to meet an accused person at court on the day of the Pleading Diet. The involvement of a Solicitor at an early stage can often allow discussions with the Procurator Fiscal regarding the charges. 

Often the charges can be negotiated, and on some occasions, the Procurator Fiscal can decide that no further action is necessary.

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Do I need to attend court personally when the case calls in court?

No, depending on how you intend to plead to the charge, you may be able to instruct a solicitor to attend on your behalf.

If you have work commitments, holiday commitments, childcare issues or illness, it is likely that one of our solicitors can appear on your behalf at the Pleading Diet.

When the case calls in court for the first time, there are three options:

  1. plead Not Guilty
  2. plead Guilty
  3. continue the case without plea for further enquiries


Normally if you wish to plead Not Guilty or have the case continued for further enquiry, there will be no requirement to attend personally. One of our solicitors can attend.

Should you wish to plead Guilty is likely you will require to attend court. On certain occasions, minor criminal charges can be dealt with by a solicitor attending court and pleading guilty in a client’s absence.

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What is a citation?

A citation is a document received from the Procurator Fiscal with a date when a person requires to answer a charge in Court.

A citation can be received by post, delivered by the police or collected from a local Police Office.

The citation will tell you what court to appear at, the date of the initial hearing (Pleading Diet), the time of the hearing and details of the charge. It will often include a brief summary of the alleged incident as described by the Police. You must answer the charge by the date noted on the citation.


Criminal Defence FAQs

If you are arrested or detained for a crime in Scotland, the police must inform you of your rights, such as the right to legal representation. You will be taken to a police station, where you may be detained for up to 12 hours without charge. After this time, you must either be charged or released, or the period extended. If charged, you may be held in custody for up to 24 hours before being brought before a court. The court will then decide whether to grant bail or remand you in custody until your trial.

Yes, in Scotland, being released on an undertaking is similar to being released on bail. Undertakings can be issued to individuals who have been arrested or charged, specifying a date and time to appear in court. A bail undertaking typically involves being charged with a crime and then released with a promise to attend a hearing. Both bail and undertakings come with certain conditions that must be met, such as attending all court dates and not committing any further offences. However, breaching bail or undertaking conditions can lead to prosecution and a prison sentence of up to twelve months.

Yes, if you are in police custody in Scotland, you have the right to free legal advice from a solicitor. This advice is available over the phone or at the police station. You should be informed about this right before being questioned, and the police must wait for the solicitor to arrive before questioning begins. However, if you do not want a solicitor present during questioning, you can waive this right, although it is not recommended. If you are under 18 or a vulnerable adult, you must have a solicitor present during questioning.

If your case goes to court, the Procurator Fiscal will decide which court it will be heard in. The court will review the evidence and then make a decision based on the facts of the case and the relevant law. If you are found guilty, you may face penalties such as fines, community service, or imprisonment. If you are found not guilty, you will be acquitted of the charges, and your case will be closed. It is important to seek legal advice and representation if you are facing criminal charges in Scotland.