Police Station Voluntary Interviews

15th August 2013
Police Station Voluntary Interviews image

Police Station Voluntary Interviews

What is a Voluntary Interview?

Many suspects are arrested for the purpose of interview. However the test as to whether an arrest may be made is whether it is necessary for a prompt and effective investigation. There are circumstances where the Police may wish to speak to someone in respect of a matter but it is possibly doubtful as to whether an arrest is necessary.

It will not stop an arrest taking place in urgent circumstances, but where a suspect indicates that they would be willing to attend the Police Station for an interview this may remove the necessity for an arrest.

Any interview will be recorded and take place under Caution meaning that it may be used in evidence.

Does it mean that the matter is not serious?

Absolutely not. It is simply a question whether an arrest is necessary. Just because the matter is dealt with by Voluntary Interview does not mean that the Police are taking the matter lightly and suspects should not be lulled into a false sense of security. Indeed it is very common for the Police to ask suspects to agree to a Voluntary Interview for offences such as historical allegations of Sexual Abuse and Rape. It may also be used when dealing with young people or people who may be vulnerable if they were to be arrested. Another useful way in which it can be used is in rural areas or areas where the local Police Station no longer accepts people under arrest. For example a suspect may be invited for an interview at Spalding, Bourne or Holbeach Police Station rather than arrest someone to take them to be booked in at Boston Police Station and then interviewed there.

Does it mean that I will not be Charged?

Again the answer is no. It is no less likely that you will be charged with an offence. It will depend on the evidence against you and as explained above your answers in interview will potentially form part of that evidence.

Do I need a Solicitor?

The choice is yours. You can be interviewed without a Solicitor if you wish. However, the Police will need to advise you at the start of the interview of your right to free and independent legal advice. The Police will need to give your Solicitor disclosure which means they will tell the Solicitor about the matter and about what they need to ask about. The Solicitor will then be able to discuss this with you in private and find out your version of events and then offer advice whether to exercise your right to remain silent, whether to answer the questions or whether to issue a prepared statement. The Solicitor will also be present throughout the interview to ensure that you are questioned fairly and that you have the opportunity to put forward any relevant information. Even if you have done what the Police suspect, a Solicitor will be able to advise you as to the likely outcome and make representations to the Police about alternative disposals other than going to Court such as a Caution, Fixed Penalty or Restorative Resolution.

Do I look guilty if I ask for a Solicitor?

Absolutely not. Anyone who is interviewed will be told they are entitled to free and independent legal advice. It cannot and will not be held against you if you ask for a Solicitor. Indeed it is likely to reduce the chance of you being charged.

Will it delay things?

Again this is unlikely. If it is a Voluntary Interview the Police can just arrange it to take place at a time that is suitable to the Officer dealing with it, the suspect and the Solicitor.

Is it really free?

Yes. Advice in respect of a Police Station Investigation is free. Solicitors are paid by the Legal Aid Agency. There is no financial test to qualify for advice in respect of Voluntary Interviews with the Police.

If you are asked to attend for a Voluntary Interview please do not hesitate to contact us to arrange for us to attend with you. If you are arrested when being booked in at the Police Station you will be asked whether you wish to have a Solicitor and if you request Maples then we will be informed of your detention and will be able to attend to represent you. If you do have any further queries in respect of Voluntary Interviews or any other aspect of a Police Investigation please contact either Daven Naghen or Anita Toal on 01775722261 or email daven.naghen@maplessolicitors.com or anita.toal@maplessolicitors.com


Property Protection Trusts image

Property Protection Trusts

Property Protection Trusts and Protecting your Property from Care Home Fees

Many people are concerned that as they get older, they may need to move into a care home and the cost of such care can be very expensive. Many people are therefore looking for ways to protect their assets from care home fees.

In recent years “Property Protection Trusts” have been promoted as being the failsafe, guaranteed way of protecting your property from care home fees. Many companies promoting such trusts are unregulated and their products such as Property Protection Trusts are being promoted and sold by sometimes nothing more than a very persuasive salesperson.

It is likely that your home is your largest asset and you should be very cautious before making any decisions with regard to your largest asset and the roof over your head. Indeed a Property Protection Trust may not even protect your home from being sold to pay for care fees or could cause tax implications and therefore it is very important that you take advice from one of our lawyers before making any decisions with regard to such Property Protection Trusts.

These Trusts can be brought to people’s attention either from cold calling, arranging home visits and sometimes even from kiosks or stalls in public areas. The people “selling” Property Protection Trusts to you can be very persuasive and may not be providing you with correct information or all of the information you should have before making a decision regarding your property. Their fees are often excessive.

In some cases, these companies even offer Lasting Powers of Attorney at what they claim to be a reduced rate. People should take caution as these “cheap” Lasting Powers of Attorney often result in being more expensive than our own charges and the companies involved often do not provide the correct advice or the necessary advice for you.

If you have been contacted by someone discussing Property Protection Trusts and would like to discuss this further with one of the lawyers in the Wills and Probate Department of this firm or you have already created a Property Protection Trust but would like to take further advice then please contact one of our lawyers in the Wills and Probate Department:-

Jane Mawer- jane.mawer@maplessolicitors.com
Jamie Dobbs- jamie.dobbs@maplessolicitors.com
Faye Blair- faye.blair@maplessolcitors.com

Or telephone the office 01775 722261 and ask to speak with one of the team.

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Testimonials

Gemma Mayer LLB

"I would highly recommend Maples Solicitors, especially Gemma Mayer, for any conveyancing work. The level of support and professionalism was excellent at all times. I also felt if I needed to ask or clarify anything that it was not an issue. Buying and selling a house is stressful enough, but Gemma helped me through it step by step."

Anita Toal LLB BA

"I think you are brilliant. You can use my comments above. You are efficient, friendly and quite clearly very good at what you do. Mainly you don’t leave people hanging around too long for." "So easy to talk to her and she understood what I wanted. She put me at ease and I cant thank her enough"

Daven Naghen LLB

"Daven provided an excellent service, from attending the first interview with me to the final court appearance. He filled me full of confidence that he would defend me to which he did and come out with an excellent outcome in view of my position that I had put myself in."

Faye Blair LLB

Faye was excellent, sensitive and acted very well to the time constraints we faced. Great service and dealt with compassion at such sad times made the process less painful very professional.

Jamie Dobbs ACILEx

Over the last forty years I have cause to deal with many law firms both in a personal and professional capacity, including some ‘top’ London Companies. In all of those dealings I have never found anyone as proactive and so willing to offer help and advice as Jamie Dobbs. During the last two years Jamie guided my parents through the completion of Lasting Powers of Attorney. Helped myself with the use of the LPA and recently dealing with Probate and Estate Administration following their death.

Mike Pepper MA

Mike Pepper gave us excellent advice. He was always most helpful and accommodating giving lucid explanations every step of the way. Thank you Mike.

Claire Smith FCILEx

Claire Smith has been amazing in every way. I highly recommend her and I am so grateful for all her help. She’s professional on all levels, reliable, extremely organised and I will be recommending her to everyone. I’m very lucky to have had her representing me and I can’t thank her enough. She is an asset to Maples. Thanks so much Claire!