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Do I Need an Attorney for a Clerk Magistrate Hearing?

attorney for clerk magistrate hearing

If you’ve received a notice for a clerk magistrate hearing, it may be intimidating.  You may wonder what this means and how to fight the charges.  A criminal defense attorney can help defend you in your clerk magistrate hearing.

Call or text me today at (617) 295-7500, and let’s get started on your defense.

What is a Clerk Magistrate Hearing?

A clerk magistrate hearing is an informal type of hearing in front of a clerk to determine whether there’s probable cause for the case to go forward.  These hearings are also called show cause hearings, probable cause hearings, or clerk’s hearings.

The hearing generally involves a clerk, the police officer, and you.  They are recorded now, by law.

If you win the clerk magistrate hearing, the charge is dismissed, and it is not on your record at all.  If you lose, your case will proceed to an arraignment, where you can fight the case in district court.

How Can an Attorney Help in a Clerk Magistrate Hearing?

If you have a clerk magistrate hearing, you need an attorney to help.  A lawyer can help present your side of the story in the best possible light, marshall evidence in your favor, and help you gather documents.

An attorney can coordinate with the clerk’s office to get all documents related to your charge to help you prepare.  I generally get the police report and all evidence prior to proceeding to a hearing.

I have done dozens of clerk magistrate hearings in my professional career and had success in them.  This is generally because I can present my client’s story in a compelling and persuasive way.

An attorney can also help by preventing you from testifying in the hearing.  You do not want to incriminate yourself in the hearing, and an attorney can mean you do not have to testify.


If you have been summonsed for a clerk magistrate hearing, it is crucial that you hire an attorney to help.  Hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney is a way to give you the best chance of leaving that clerk’s hearing with the best outcome: a dismissal! I handle clerk magistrate hearings all around Massachusetts.  Call or text me today at (617) 295-7500, and I’d be glad to help!


Although I am an attorney, I am not your attorney.  Please do not rely on anything on this page as legal advice because any specific advice would depend on your situation.  Any results posted on this page are not guarantees of outcomes in your case.

Boston Attorney

The court system is stressful, whether you’re being charged with a crime, being sued, suing someone, or fighting for your ability to stay and work in this country. You need someone who appreciates this and can dedicate the time not only to represent you effectively in court but to guide you through the process.

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