You may have heard lawyers talk about an “alleged” incident. They aren’t trying to sound smart. In fact, there is a real reason behind the way that lawyers talk. It could also help you to think like a legal defense expert and start using some of these ways of speaking.
Why Something Is “Alleged”
The prosecution has the burden of proving to the jury that the defendant committed the crime accused of. Until this occurs in court, there is no proof of the defendant’s connection to the event. Therefore, lawyers will use the term “alleged.” In a legal sense, this term means to make an allegation or suggest that something is true without showing proof. Because the court has yet to try the case, there is no official proof.
Words Matter to People
In pending cases, all defendants are innocent until proven guilty. Therefore, until a trial, a person cannot be identified with the crime. In fact, you will not hear a lawyer speak about a “burglar” when referring to someone on trial for that crime. They will be the “defendant.”
Even if someone has a conviction, they are still a person convicted of a crime. They are not “criminals.” Placing the person in front of the incident ensures that the speaker acknowledges the person first and the incident second. This is similar to person-first verbiage used in other areas, such as when speaking about people with disabilities.
Care Counts in the Law
The legal system can seem so complex that public defenders often don’t have enough time to really look deeply into cases. Therefore, those who use them may not get the best advice for what they need to do. Defense attorneys should put care into each case. Finding a lawyer who has the time and will make an effort in defending you can be a positive step toward getting help when experiencing legal issues.
Contact an Orange County Legal Defense Professional Who Will Take Time with Your Case
Connect with the Law Office of Steven K. Bloom to get a consultation on your case. When you need legal defense, facing the law can feel daunting. But, with help from a professional with years of experience in the field, you don’t have to feel alone.