Your Rights as a Defendant in Florida

Your Rights as a Defendant in Florida

“You have the right to remain silent.” We’ve heard this phrase in countless movies and TV shows. It’s a right every defendant has when they are arrested and involved in the criminal justice system.

Immediately, a defendant has the presumption of innocence until proven guilty, and the prosecution must prove the defendant’s guilt beyond all doubt. These are rights from both the US Constitution and Florida state laws.

criminal defense lawyer discussing rights as a defendant in florida

Your freedoms are limited as a defendant. But you still have rights during your case, including remaining silent. As criminal defense attorneys, we strongly suggest you invoke that right as soon as you’ve identified yourself as a law enforcement officer. 

The Miranda Warning

The actual Miranda Warning is:

“You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand the rights I have just read to you? With these rights in mind, do you wish to speak to me?”

You must immediately tell the officer that you wish to invoke your right to silence and to speak to an attorney before answering any further questions.

The Right to an Attorney

You must notify the officer that you want to speak to an attorney. They are required to stop all questions until your attorney arrives. Sometimes officers continue to question, but you do not have to answer once you invoke your right to an attorney. This is separate from your right to stay silent.

Unlawful Search And Seizure

Law enforcement must have probable cause to conduct searches under the Fourth Amendment. They may not arbitrarily search without a warrant for your home, your car, or anywhere else.

Due Process

In Florida, you have the right to:

  • A fair and speedy trial by jury and open to the public
  • Be informed of the charges against you
  • Present evidence and witnesses
  • Cross-examine witnesses
  • No cruel and unusual punishments
  • Appeal any convictions

However, the state is not required to grant an appeal.


Florida allows defendants to be released on bail, or a payment made to the court to be released before trial. The amount will depend on the severity of the charges. You have the right not to be given excessive bail, i.e., $1 million for a jaywalking citation.

“Double Jeopardy”

Once acquitted of a charge, or the charge is dismissed, you cannot be re-tried for the same crime without new or additional evidence.

These are just some of the rights defendants have once they are taken into custody. 


After an arrest, it’s your responsibility to protect and defend yourself. The police are unconcerned with justice, only making arrests, and solving cases. We believe that you should consult with a criminal defense attorney anytime you are asked to speak to the police. Say nothing to them until you speak with us.

If you or a loved one has been arrested or accused of a crime, contact the criminal defense team of Farkas & Crowley as soon as possible. We are available 24/7, whenever you need us. Call (561)-444-9529 or contact us online to schedule your consultation.

Why Choose Us?

Certified by the Florida Bar

Experience in both defense & prosecution

Focus on criminal law

Aggressive, committed attorneys & legal staff ready to defend your rights

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Looking for a criminal law firm? Farkas & Crowley, P.A. are the attorneys for you. They are extremely knowledgeable of the law and go the extra mile for their clients. Their expertise and impeccable work ethic are hard to beat. Available 24/7. Highly recommended.

-Marla Newman

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West Palm Beach, FL 33401


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Farkas & Crowley, PA

Criminal Defense & Family Law Lawyers