Michael Staines & Co Solicitors Dublin | Criminal Court Solicitors Dublin | Irish Criminal Court Lawyers

What to do when you receive a summons

A summons  is a legal document which states you must attend court on a particular date and time to answer a criminal allegation. Early legal advise is essential.


Your summons will outline details of the offence that it is alleged you have committed. It will also contain your name and address, the name of the prosecuting Garda and the piece of legislation that you have allegedly breached. It is important you make yourself available on that date to attend court. 


A summons must be served at least seven days before the court date if delivered by hand or at least 21 days if delivered by post. Generally speaking, a summons must issue within 6 months of the offence if it is to be dealt with by summary disposal. There are however exceptions.

As soon as you receive a summons you should contact our office and schedule a consultation with one of our solicitors. The solicitor will talk you through the offence you are alleged to have committed and explain the possible outcomes. Our solicitors will set out your options and the possible ways of dealing with your matter. If you wish to plead not guilty, we will ensure one of our skilled advocates or counsel fully contest and fight the case on your behalf.

A solicitor from our office will attend court with you and address the court on your behalf.  If you do not attend court the Judge may choose to deal with your matter in your absence, they may choose to adjourn it in your absence or they may issue a bench warrant for your arrest. Early legal advice from an expert criminal defence solicitor is essential.

Grace Clarke, Trainee Solicitor

5th June 2024