First Appearance

After an individual has been arrested for a crime, he or she will be required to appear before a judge. This usually takes place within 48 hours of the arrest, but may take longer if the defendant is arrested on the weekend or on a holiday.

This is an important step in the criminal process, as it is the first time an individual will appear before a judge and hear what he or she is being charged with in a formal setting. If you have been arrested for a crime, it would be in your best interest to contact a Dallas criminal defense lawyer before your first appearance.

Dallas First Appearance Lawyer

If you have been charged with a crime in Garland, Irving, Grand Prairie, Denton, Plano, McKinney, Fort Worth, Rockwall, Johnson, Wise, Ellis, Arlington, Mesquite, Carrolton, Richardson, Lewisville, Frisco, or the surrounding areas, contact Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy. Attorney Richard McConathy is knowledgeable in all areas of Texas’ criminal process and will make every effort to fight the allegations against you.

Call Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy for a free consultation at (972) 233-5700 about your alleged offense, and let these defense attorneys devote their time and energy to helping you achieve the best possible outcome. 


First Appearance Information Center in Texas


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First Appearance in Texas

At the first appearance, the defendant will appear before a judge for the first time during the criminal process. The court will establish the defendant’s identity for record, and advise the defendant on his or her legal rights. The judge will also notify the defendant of the charges against him or her, and ask the defendant to enter a plea.

The defendant can enter a plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest. If a guilty or no contest plea is entered, the case will be moved to the sentencing phase of the criminal process. If the defendant pleads not guilty, his or her case will go to trial.


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Court Appointed Defense Attorney in Texas

During this time, the judge will also make note of who your defense attorney is. If you do not have an attorney, and can’t afford one, the judge will appoint a defense attorney to represent you. According to the Code of Criminal Procedure Article 26.04(d), each court appointed lawyer must the following criteria in order to be able to represent a client:

  • Must have applied to be on the list of potential court appointed attorneys
  • Must be approved by a majority of the judges who establish the list
  • Must meet qualifications set forth by the Texas Indigent Defense Commission
  • Must meet the objective qualifications specified by the judges in the Code of Criminal Procedure Article 2604(e)

Although court-appointed lawyers are free, you do not have the right to choose which one is assigned to your case. In order to give yourself the best chance at trial, it is important that you seek adequate legal representation.

By hiring your own attorney, you can ensure that you have someone on your side that will listen to your concerns, and build a defense that is designed to achieve your desired outcome. 


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Providing You with an Adequate Defense

Contact Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy today if you are facing criminal charges in Dallas County in Texas or the surrounding counties of Denton County, Collin County and Tarrant County. Richard McConathy is an experienced Dallas criminal lawyer who will make every effort to find mitigating factors that may have your charges reduced or even dismissed.

Call (972) 233-5700 or complete an online form to set up a consultation about your cases. These attorneys have the resources and knowledge necessary to provide an adequate defense for your case.


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Client Testimonials

  • 5 stars
    I would like to thank the Law Office of Richard C. McConathy for your awesome and courtious attention to professionalism. I am amazed at Richard and Brian''s ability to get a fast resolution and am grateful to them for the time put into this matter. I could feel the genuine concern and dedication that the attorney''s put on my case.
    - Andrea L.
  • 5 stars
    I hired The Law Office of Richard C. McConathy after I got arrested for DWI. In my life of work, I absolutely could not have a conviction on my record. At trial, I was found Not Guilty. Brian and Richard are the best lawyers in Dallas!
    - David C.
  • 5 stars
    I was able to keep my driver''s license and keep a clean a record as both the ALR and DWI case were both dismissed! I was pleased with their professionalism and ability to work with me to achieve the best possible outcome, dismissals all around.
    - James M.
  • 5 stars
    I was pulled over on the North Dallas Tollway for going 90 mph. The cop said that I was all over the road, and failed all the field tests and was obviously intoxicated. I pretty much lost all hope that I would walk away from this. That was until I found Richard McConathy. Richard and his firm fought the DA and eventually got my case dismissed. I couldn''t give a bigger recommendation for these guys. If you''re in trouble don''t hesitate, it is worth it.
    - Greg B.
  • 5 stars
    The law offices of Richard C. McConathy represented me with the utmost professionalism and they secured a victory for my probation revocation case. My case was nine years old and I was told by other firms that it would be very difficult to get the judge to revoke. This firm took my case on, and not only won the judgment, but also got the original probation case conditions dismissed. I highly recommend this law firm to any person in need if legal representation. They are very considerate and extremely knowledgeable.
    - Brant G.
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