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Habeas Cases and Deadlines

What you should know about habeas corpus cases.

A habeas case (seeking a writ of habeas corpus) is an extraordinary remedy designed to test the validity and legality of detention or incarceration. Most habeas cases — especially in Virginia — allege some type of ineffective assistance of counsel or misconduct by the prosecution or police. Generally speaking, a habeas case will include claims that the petitioner’s constitutional rights were violated by the trial or appellate attorney, or the prosecutor, or the police, or the jury (if any), or the judge.

Habeas cases are very difficult to win, and numerous procedural hurdles must be cleared before a court will even consider the merits of the claims. Indeed, habeas investigation and litigation is a highly specialized area of the law, and it can be extremely frustrating, expensive, and time consuming.

Nonetheless, it often represents the last chance a person has to request judicial review of their convictions and/or sentences.

In many civil law countries, prosecutors are trained and employed as part of the judiciary; they are law-trained jurists, but may not necessarily be lawyers in the sense that the word is used in the common law world. In common law countries, prosecutors are usually lawyers holding regular licenses who simply happen to work for the government office that files criminal charges against suspects. Criminal defense lawyers specialize in the defense of those charged with any crimes.

In many civil law countries, prosecutors are trained and employed as part of the judiciary; they are law-trained jurists, but may not necessarily be lawyers in the sense that the word is used in the common law world. In common law countries, prosecutors are usually lawyers holding regular licenses who simply happen to work for the government office that files criminal charges against suspects. Criminal defense lawyers specialize in the defense of those charged with any crimes.

In many civil law countries, prosecutors are trained and employed as part of the judiciary; they are law-trained jurists, but may not necessarily be lawyers in the sense that the word is used in the common law world. In common law countries, prosecutors are usually lawyers holding regular licenses who simply happen to work for the government office that files criminal charges against suspects. Criminal defense lawyers specialize in the defense of those charged with any crimes.

In many civil law countries, prosecutors are trained and employed as part of the judiciary; they are law-trained jurists, but may not necessarily be lawyers in the sense that the word is used in the common law world. In common law countries, prosecutors are usually lawyers holding regular licenses who simply happen to work for the government office that files criminal charges against suspects. Criminal defense lawyers specialize in the defense of those charged with any crimes.

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An important aspect of a lawyer’s job is developing and managing relationships with clients (or the client’s employees, if the lawyer works in-house for a government or corporation).

The client-lawyer relationship is explained in six steps. First, the relationship begins with an intake interview where the lawyer gets to know the client personally. Second step is discovering the facts of the client’s case. Thirdly is clarifying what the client wants to accomplish. The fourth step is where the lawyer shapes the client’s expectations.