Minor Offenses and Desk Appearance Tickets (DATs)

New York Summons Lawyers

The NYPD sets out each day to hand out summonses or Desk Appearance Tickets (DATs) for minor crimes. New York summons and DATs are only issued for non-violent crimes and to first-time offenders. Some of the charges that generally warrant a summons or DAT are: theft of services (jumping the turnstile), public urination, shoplifting, possession of small amounts of controlled substances, and possession of small amounts of marijuana.

Schedule a free case evaluation when you call Sullivan & Brill at (646) 741-3856today!

What happens if you have been issued a summons or DAT?

If you have been given a summons or a DAT, you luckily will not go through the "system," or experience the normal arraignment procedure. This is a plus, considering that the normal arraignment procedure may keep you in a holding cell for sometimes close to 24 hours. The procedure when one is issued a New York summons or DAT is much more palpable. When you are stopped and given either a summons or a DAT, you will be given a "ticket" and told to return to the criminal courthouse, depending on which borough you were stopped, on a day in the future. Usually it may be about two months from the day you receive the summons or the DAT.

Some may think that because these are minor crimes, there is less to worry about and you will not need the services of an experienced New York criminal defense lawyer. You should not necessarily think this way. Although the crimes charged are minor, they may still be crimes. In fact, when one receives a DAT, it is considered an arrest.

In theory, if you are convicted of the charge on the summons or the DAT, you could sustain a criminal record, which in turn, could lead to negative consequences for your employment, driver's license privileges, or your immigration status. In addition, if you do not return to court on the date indicated on the summons or DAT, the prosecution can request and a judge can issue a bench warrant for your arrest. Needless to say, when you receive a NYC summons or a DAT, it is a good idea to have an attorney handle it.

What this boils down to is: Do not make what is a relatively minor situation worse. It is never too early to speak with our firm. We will advise you of all of the options and risks, as well as appear with you (or for you if you are a corporation or residing out of the city) when you are scheduled to appear.

If you have been arrested and given a New York summons or a DAT, call Sullivan & Brill today for legal representation.

Areas We Serve

Our firm serves clients in New York City, Long Island, Kings, Bronx, New York, Queens, Richmond, Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, and Rockland Counties, and San Juan, Puerto Rico.