Pre-Trial Strategy: Stay Your Trial

To "stay" your trial, you are stopping the judicial process. That is what "stay" means within the legal context: stop everything. You are no longer being prosecuted.

If you stay the trial, all you are doing is stopping the process of you going to trial. You do not receive a verdict. You are not being found innocent. You are not being found guilty. The charge is not withdrawn. Everything just stops.

The whole point of requesting a trial is so that you are not convicted. There is a difference between being declared innocent after a trial and never being convicted. If the justice finds you innocent or guilty she is giving a verdict. By stopping the process before your trial begins, you avoid any verdict. This is what you want, avoiding a guilty verdict or conviction.

So what happens to the charge? Nothing, it doesn't go away. Technically the court is granting you the right not to be tried. However, the Crown can appeal the decision to stay your trial. This is very rare and often the appeal is unsuccessful.

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