Navigating the Juvenile Law SystemThe juvenile justice system is very different from the adult system, but the Constitutional Rights that are afforded to all people also apply to juveniles.
Presenting a juvenile’s unique needs takes a unique talent. When working with juvenile clients, things need to be explained very clearly and simply so that the juvenile can understand. Also, there is a constant balancing of emotions with respect to parents and family members who often do not understand the juvenile system or as to why a case may continue for a period of time.
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Defending Youth Rights
Attorney Kerri Quintal has 15 years experience representing juveniles charged with a crime and presenting their unique needs to a Massachusetts court, including:
- Listening to their whole story
- Explaining in easy-to-understand language juvenile rights
- Seeking Justice for young people
- Fighting for kids and young people
- Making sure the record (conviction) stays clean if possible
- Balancing between respecting parents’ concerns and the juvenile’s interests
A Network of Professionals to HelpThe function of the Juvenile Law System is to rehabilitate juveniles and not punish them.
Attorney Kerri Quintal works with a network of Medical, Mental Health, and Neuropsychological special education advocates to set a new course for a life for her juvenile clients. Many juvenile cases have mental health componants, trauma, mitigating factors, and other surrounding facts that need to be exposed in order to present the best defense possible for the person. Doctors, psychiatrists or therapists may prove extremely helpful in developing a successful outcome for a juvenile.
What Parents of Juveniles Want To Know
- A quick overview of what is going to happen at court
- A clear understanding of who is going to do what
- How long the day in court will take ( we never know how long)
- How this charge is going to affect a job application
- How this charge is going to affect an application for financial aid
- Who can see an arrest entry and what happens to it in the future
- To be sure that their child doesn’t do anything wrong
- Why the matter can’t be resolved sooner
- Why others involved in the incident were not charged and how that affects their child’s case
- The difference between dismissal, pretrial probation, continuance without a finding with probation, and “guilty”
Kerri Quintal Answers Parent’s Questions
I will work closely with you and your son or daughter (or other relative) to ensure that you understand the current situation and its future ramifications.
- I make sure that I am accessible to you
- Will answer any and all questions no matter how complex
- Offer a realistic expectations of what to expect during proceedings
- Present what role you will play in the case
- Present what role the judge and other parties will play
- Try to anticipate what the opposing side may try to present
- Keep you actively informed at all stages of the proceedings