Sanity Hearings

Sanity Hearing Attorney in Southern California

When it comes to the field of mental health, there are many extenuating circumstances that must be taken into consideration before bringing a case to court. Perhaps the biggest and most important of these factors is determining a person's sanity (or insanity), and hence, their capability to appear before a criminal court using the sanity hearing.

What is a Sanity Hearing?

Sanity hearings are used to legally determine whether or not the defendant accused of a crime embodies the mental competence to stand trial. Before any type of charge can be taken to the courts, the accused individual must be deemed mentally capable of being able to adequately handle themselves in a trial courtroom. Furthermore, they must display the mental capacity necessary to comprehend the legal situation in which they will soon find themselves.

During the hearing, evidence is presented on whether:

  • The individual understood the nature of the crime he/she is accused of
  • The individual understands that the act was wrong

A jury will then decide unanimously that the defendant was insane during the commission of the crime, and is subsequently not guilty by reason of insanity.

What Happens After a Sanity Hearing?

Individuals deemed incompetent to stand trial will be sent to state run mental health facility until they have regained competency. Once competency has been restored, criminal proceedings resume.

An individual is considered incompetent if they cannot comprehend the nature of the proceedings against them and/or cannot assist in their own defense.

Protecting the Rights of Those with Mental Health Issues

Those who suffer from mental illness are still allotted rights within the legal justice system, and a Southern California mental health attorney can help ensure that these rights are not compromised. At Lessem & Newstat we have represented hundreds of clients suffering from various levels of mental illness. We have relationships with top psychologists and psychiatrists and can help make sure that clients that are not competent to stand trial have their rights protected.

Whether you are in need of a lawyer that can adequately represent you in a sanity hearing, or your case has already been taken to another court system and now awaits trial, we are here to offer our services. Having represented hundreds of clients suffering from mental illness, we have the experience to navigate and understand the complex issues that arise in competency hearings and other proceedings where mental health becomes an issue.

Serving Clients Across Southern California

Throughout Southern California, from Van Nuys to Santa Barbara and all of their surrounding areas, the legal team at Lessem & Newstat, LLP has been able to provide legal services of both a criminal and mental health nature. Together, we have more than 50 years of legal experience in the field, much of which has been spent in the courtrooms of Los Angeles and Ventura.

Don't wait to contact a Southern California sanity hearings defense lawyer from our firm. You need legal help, and we can help.

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