How long does the state have to formally charge me

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Latest post Thu, Feb 5 2009 4:41 PM by Cica. 9 replies.
  • Wed, Feb 4 2009 10:57 PM

    Question [=?] How long does the state have to formally charge me

    I'm in Florida and I was arrested for Grand theft; $600 in merchandise.... The state attorney hasn't formally files charged yet. So I was wondering how long does the State Attorney have to formally file charges against me?

    I went to the court house to get a public defender and they told me that the State Attorney has 30 to 45 days to formally charge me from the date of arrest, but if they don't the case will be dropped.... But she also told me that they can pick the case back up again??? I'm confused... It's been a little over 30 days now since I was arrested, so could this mean that the case may get dropped soon...


    Plz, I need someone with legal expertise to answer this, and not some random person that thinks they know the answer... and don't tell me to ask a lawyer.... they don't give free advice... Thnx
  • Thu, Feb 5 2009 8:32 AM In reply to

    Feedback [*=*] re: How long does the state have to formally charge me

    The time for the state to bring charges against you is governed by the application Statute of Limitations (SOL) for the particular offense in question.

    For most alleged felonies in Florida that time period is 3 years from when the alleged crime occurred.

    The SOL's are longer for certain offenses, such as murder. Felony grand theft probably would have a three year SOL in your state.
  • Thu, Feb 5 2009 8:53 AM In reply to

    • Cica
      Consumer
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    • Joined on Tue, Sep 23 2003
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    re: How long does the state have to formally charge me

    "Plz, I need someone with legal expertise to answer this, and not some random person *that thinks they know the answer*...and don't tell me to ask a lawyer.... they don't give free advice..."

    Suggestion: I would keep in mind that the "random people who think they know the answer" aren't necessarily ones about to face criminal charges. You are hardly in a position to be selective.

    Consult local counsel. (Or don't.)
  • Thu, Feb 5 2009 12:43 PM In reply to

    • Ford
      Lawyer
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    • Joined on Thu, Mar 16 2000
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    Feedback [*=*] re: How long does the state have to formally charge me

    "So I was wondering how long does the State Attorney have to formally file charges against me?"

    Depends on state law. In my state they have 5 years to prosecute general felonies. As long as there isn't a dismissal with prejudice, they can dismiss and refile over and over again.

    "the State Attorney has 30 to 45 days to formally charge me from the date of arrest, but if they don't the case will be dropped.... But she also told me that they can pick the case back up again??? I'm confused..."

    How is that confusing? The statute of limitations runs from the event, or possibly discover of the theft since thefts are secret by their nature. The statute of limitations on a felony is likely several years.

    Dismissal does not stop the state from refiling unless it is a dismissal with prejudice. If they never file something in the first place, there's no dismissal.

    You have a constitutional speedy trial right that runs from the arrest. You may have a statutory speedy right that also runs from arrest, and requires an information or indictment within X amount of time.
  • Thu, Feb 5 2009 3:07 PM In reply to

    Question [=?] re: How long does the state have to formally charge me

    from what i understand the statue of limitation comes into play when charges have already been filed. No charges have been formally charged on me yet. From what I understand they have 30 to 45 days from the day i was arrested to charge me. If not the charges are dropped but can be picked up again if they choose to. I guess you all dont understand what I'm saying. I need someone with expertise to answer this...
  • Thu, Feb 5 2009 3:09 PM In reply to

    re: How long does the state have to formally charge me

    you're right thats why i dont want those people responding. I want someone who know what they're talking about and not someone who will tell me to get counsel. ex. you
  • Thu, Feb 5 2009 4:26 PM In reply to


    Feedback [*=*] re: How long does the state have to formally charge me

    NO. The statute of limitations sets out how long the prosecution has to file charges. It has no application once charges are filed. That would relate specifically to a state's speedy trial provision and does not automatically operate to preclude the refiling of charges.
  • Thu, Feb 5 2009 4:41 PM In reply to

    • Cica
      Consumer
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    • Joined on Tue, Sep 23 2003
    • Posts 6,520

    Life's tough.

    You are going to learn, poster, that, especially in review of your threads, whatcha want ain't necessarily gonna be whatcha'll get.

    Enjoy the attorney responses while you can. :)
  • Thu, Feb 5 2009 8:10 PM In reply to

    • LynnM
      Lawyer
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    • Joined on Mon, Apr 3 2000
    • CA
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    re: How long does the state have to formally charge me

    The problem is not the explanation. The problem is your understanding is wrong.

    You have had answers from several experts and you keep telling them they are wrong. If you will not accept the answers you get here, perhaps you should pay an attorney to explain it to you.
  • Fri, Feb 6 2009 1:53 PM In reply to

    • Ford
      Lawyer
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    • Joined on Thu, Mar 16 2000
    • Posts 12,797

    Disagree [)*(] Opposite of what I said. This is draining . . .

    "from what i understand the statue of limitation comes into play when charges have already been filed."

    No. Say the SOL on felony battery was 5 years. I beat the tar out of a stranger on Jan 1 2009. The state has 5 years from that date to file charges.

    The state CANNOT file a charge in 2020 and successfully pursue it.

    The date of the crime (or sometimes discovery of the crime) starts the SOL.

    "From what I understand they have 30 to 45 days from the day i was arrested to charge me."

    That is ONE time limit that MIGHT be in play.

    "If not the charges are dropped but can be picked up again if they choose to. I guess you all dont understand what I'm saying. I need someone with expertise to answer this..."

    Three attorneys with probably 25-plus years of experience have replied...
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