What Happens at My First Court Hearing?

Posted by Corey L. Scott | Jun 30, 2021 | 0 Comments

If you have been charged with a crime, and your initial hearing is fast approaching, you may understandably be a little anxious or worried. What do you do? What should you expect? These are questions I get all the time as a criminal defense attorney, and I would like to walk you through what to expect at your first initial hearing.

The main purpose of the initial hearing is to make sure that you are fully informed of and understand the charges being brought against you, and for the court to communicate the range and possible penalties you could be facing. You will also be entering your initial plea at this first hearing. In most cases, certainly in Indiana, that initial plea is going to be entered for you by the judge, and it will be a plea of not guilty. You and your attorney can always change that not guilty plea later in the process.

The court will want to confirm that your name and date of birth are correct, that you have a copy of the charging information, and that you get a copy of the probable cause affidavit. The court will then inquire whether you plan to retain private counsel, or if the court should consider appointing public counsel at the state's expense. Typically, these hearings are very short, and most are done in five minutes or less. Most likely the court will then set the date for the next hearing, which is called a pre-trial conference. If you notify the court that you are going to hire counsel, they will expect your counsel to enter an appearance and be present with you at the next hearing.

That is essentially everything you can expect from your initial hearing! My name is Corey Scott, and if I can be of any further assistance, please reach out to me. I will be more than happy to help. 

About the Author

Corey L. Scott

Corey L. Scott, was born and raised in East Chicago, Indiana. Upon graduation from East Chicago Central High School, Corey attended Indiana State University and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminology.  Upon graduation, Corey accepted a position with the Marion County Superior Court, Juvenile Division where he served with distinction for the next nine years, eventually being promoted to Director of the Youth Counseling Department. Pursuing his dream of becoming an attorney, Corey attended the Indiana University School of Law-Indianapolis.  While in law school, Corey was an Indiana Council on Legal Education Opportunity (ICLEO) fellow and participated in Moot Court competitions.  He also worked in the Marion Superior Court, Criminal Division as a bailiff and research assistant to the Honorable Tanya Walton Pratt, who serves as a Judge on the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. Corey also served as an internship law clerk to the Honorable Judge, Margret G. Robb, at the Indiana Court of Appeals. Finally, upon graduation from law school, Corey had the distinct honor and privilege to serve as a law clerk to the Honorable Justice, Robert D. Rucker, who sits on the Indiana Supreme Court. Corey then became an associate with Mike Norris Law Office, where he specialized in bankruptcy law with a main concentration on working to assist families obtain a fresh start through Chapter 7 bankruptcy.  Still a young attorney, Corey then served as a public defender at the Marion County Public Defender Agency.  In this position, Corey gained invaluable trial experience by defending clients in a wide range of matters from misdemeanors to serious felonies on a daily basis.  It was also during this time that Corey discovered his passion for representing and serving "everyday people." An entrepreneur at heart, Corey established the Law Office of Corey L. Scott, P.C.  Since then, he and his staff have served the greater Indianapolis community and surrounding counties in several legal disciplines including: Bankruptcy, Criminal Defense and Family Law.  In keeping with his vision, Corey L. Scott, P.C., is a client focused, results oriented general law practice that endeavors to provide legal solutions for "everyday people" charged with a crime, dealing with financial crisis or going through a difficult divorce. Corey has also been active serving the greater Indianapolis community by participating in pro bono programs such as "Ask a Lawyer," the "Modest Means" panel program which allows individuals to afford legal counsel at a fraction of normal rates, Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic and the Heartland Pro Bono Council program. Corey is a proud member of the Indianapolis Bar Association, Indiana Bar Association, American Bar Association, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys.


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The Law Office of Corey L. Scott, P.C., specializes in Bankruptcy Law, Criminal Law, and Family Law.


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