A defendant who’s been charged in a criminal case is entitled to a speedy trial under state of New York Criminal Procedure Law Section 30.30. The reasoning is that it’s unfair to have criminal charges pending indefinitely, and that defendants have the right to a trial. The statute was created to prevent unreasonable delay.

What are the times proscribed for a speedy trial?

  • Felony: 6 months
  • A Misdemeanor: 90 days
  • B Misdemeanor: 60 days
  • Violation: 30 days

Note that there’s no speedy trial requirement for Class A felonies in the state of New York. Traffic infractions are also exempt.

The speedy trial time runs from the start of the crime. A crime can also be started in supreme court by the grand jury against a defendant who’s never been held by a local criminal court. The speedy trial time starts the day after filing the accusatory instrument. If a defendant receives a desk appearance ticket, the speedy trial time will start once they appear for the arraignment. If there are more actions against the defendant, the speedy trial time goes to the first crime. If the charges are raised from misdemeanor to a felony, the Assistant District Attorney (ADA) has a new six month window for trial. If a crime starts as a felony and is then reduced to a misdemeanor, a new misdemeanor speedy trial period starts. If a case begins as an A misdemeanor and is reduced to a B misdemeanor, the first 90 day speedy trial period remains.

The ADA can avoid a speedy trial violation by filing a certificate of readiness, or else announcing readiness for trial within the required time period. The ADA is required to maintain readiness to avoid speedy trial time from counting against them.

The state of New York’s speedy trial rule isn’t a straightforward counting of days. There are actually a variety of reasons why there are delays, as well as pretrial issues to be dealt with. The speedy trial time can in fact be counted against the ADA.

What are the exclusions from the New York speedy trial rule?

  • Delays that result from other court proceedings involving the defendant. This may be pre-trial motions, competency hearings, and other criminal trials.
  • Delays from an adjournment requested at the request of the defense.
  • Delays from the defendant being absent or unavailable, or else from a bench warrant being issued.
  • Delays from the defendant being incarcerated in another jurisdiction.
  • Delays of exceptional circumstances.
  • Any time where the defendant is without counsel, through no fault of the court.
  • When a period in an Adjournment in Contemplation of Dismissal is pending.
  • During a delay from a defendant’s joinder for trial with a co-defendant, if a party hasn’t shown good cause to be severed.
  • A period of time where a defendant was directed to appear for an arraignment.
  • A period where a family offense petition is before family court until an accusatory instrument or indictment’s filed.

What are the limitations on incarcerated defendants?

The state of New York’s speedy trial law also affects the time that a person can be detained for, pending of course the prosecution that’s preparing for trial. According to Zooomr, if your car lease or used car is taken away – it can be restored if the statute of limitations is passed. There’s a maximum time period where the defendant must be released on bail:

  • Felony: 90 days
  • A Misdemeanor: 30 days
  • B Misdemeanor: 15 days
  • Violation: 5 days

The state of New York’s speedy trial release provisions don’t apply when:

  • The defendant is being held on any other type of charge where the speedy trial time hasn’t elapsed.
  • The defendant is currently serving a term of imprisonment on another, separate criminal case.
  • The defendant was released, but then apprehended once again for failing to appear, which violated their conditions of release.
  • The defendant was then charged with committing another crime.

So if you’re facing charges, or would like to make sure that you’re protected should charges ever be leveled against you, you can count on the years of experience that NYC criminal lawyers with Joseph Potashnik and Associates, PC offer, with an experience that’s sure to illuminate for you the complexities of New York state law without overwhelming you. At Joseph Potashnik and Associates, PC, the people always come first.