My Child Has Been Arrested: Next Steps

(1) Advise your child not to speak to anybody about their case until they have consulted with an attorney. Whether or not they were given their Miranda warnings, anything they say or admit can be used against them—even by their family and friends if they were to be subpoenaed. This means ANYTHING they say: information they believe helps them or their case may later be twisted around to hurt them. If your child is contacted by a police officer, detective, insurance agent, investigator or anybody you did not directly employ to represent your child, you and your child should politely decline to speak with them.

(2) Do not interrogate your child about what he or she did. (Chances are that if you are reading this, it's too late.) Unfortunately, there is no parent-child privilege under Texas law. In other words, in serious cases the prosecution can subpoena you to be a witness against your own child. The easiest way to prevent this is by not seeking potentially incriminating information from your child.

(3) Depending upon the seriousness of the offense, you may receive notice from your child's school about a suspension, removal or expulsion hearing. This process may begin as soon as the day following the incident. If your child has special education needs, you may also be notified about an ARD hearing. If you intend upon hiring a lawyer for your child, you should NOT appear at these hearings without a lawyer; instead, notify the appropriate school administrators that you are in the process of hiring a lawyer, and ask for any such meetings/hearings to be postponed. Understand that the school district is required to follow certain statutory timelines and may, in some cases, hold a meeting without your presence; it is important, therefore, to get a lawyer involved as soon as possible.

(4) Understand that the probation officer assigned by the Juvenile Court to your child's case can be your best friend or your worst nightmare. Be as cooperative with the probation department as possible -- they will make recommendations to the judge about what the punishment should be if your child is adjudicated.


Please have the following information available so we can be of better help to you during our telephone conversation:
(1) Is your child currently in a juvenile detention facility?
(2) Child's name and date of birth
(3) Court date
(4) School and grade
(5) Brief social history of child's behavior and academic performance in school
(6) Name of probation officer assigned to case
(7) Information regarding the child's previous involvement in juvenile crime (if applicable)

We will also ask if you have ever hired or consulted with lawyers before so that we may tailor the answers to your questions accordingly.

We will then schedule an appointment for our first meeting.

After our conversation, we will e-mail you a .pdf file with additional questions and materials to bring to our first meeting. We ask that you respond to these questions prior to our meeting.


1. Call the office (512.381-9955) and tell the person answering the phone the following: "I am a potential client calling in an emergency."

2. You will be asked, "What is the nature of your emergency?"

3. Succinctly state one of the following scenarios:

-I need to get somebody out of jail

-A police officer is wanting me to answer questions

-The police are at my house with a warrant

4. Do not go into the full details of what is happening (if time is critical you don't want to have to repeat the facts).

5. Listen to the specific questions being asked about your identifying information and the person you are trying to help. You may be asked to stay on the line or we will ask if it is okay that we call you back in a few minutes as we must first make sure that we don't have a conflict with your case. (For example, if we have ever represented a client that is involved in the current emergency, we will probably not be able to handle your case as a result of our duty of lifetime loyalty to our existing or previous client).

6. If there is no conflict, we will gather the pertinent details of your emergency, calculate the costs of an initial retainer to begin working, and begin work once we have your authorization.

© 2018 Sumpter & González , L.L.P.
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Sumpter & González L.L.P.
206 East 9th Street, Suite 1511
Austin, TX 78701

Office Hours:
Monday-Friday 9AM - 5PM
Telephone: 512-381-9955
Fax: 512-485-3121
Emergency Jail Release: 512-600-6151