The short answer: No, you don’t have to tell your parents about being arrested. But criminal records are public, so they may find out anyways.
So, you’ve been arrested or written a citation for a criminal matter.
- Maybe you were just out at a party with some friends and gotten written up for Minor in Possession (a Class C misdemeanor).
- Maybe you got pulled over and a cop smelled something in your car, and before you knew it, you had been arrested for Possession of Marijuana.
- Maybe you got into an altercation with another individual and were arrested for Assault.
Whatever charge you may have received, it is completely normal to be worried about how the case will affect your education, your relationships, your financials, your freedom, and the rest of your life. But there’s one big question you might not know how to handle: How do I tell my parents?
Your parents don’t have to be involved at all. Unless you, the client, give our office your express consent to communicate with another individual regarding the details of your case, your attorney is obligated to maintain attorney-client privilege, which means that anything you and your attorney discuss is confidential.
There is no legal requirement for adults (individuals over the age of 18) to disclose the details of a criminal case to their parents, even if the charge is related to their age – such as Minor in Possession, DUI minor, or Misrepresentation of Age. HOWEVER, criminal cases are public record. Anything that the public can access, your parents can also access. We cannot prevent them from knowing anything that has been made public by law enforcement.
If you choose to involve your parents, you may give your consent for your attorney to communicate case details with your parents. If you choose, we can ensure that we only share certain details with family, such as when you have a court date coming up, or whether your case has been filed in the court system. It is up to you to determine how much info (that is not already public) we can share with your parents.
If you’ve been charged with a crime and you don’t know where to even start, call our office today for a consultation with an experienced attorney who can guide you through the process, work hard to defend your freedom, and advise you of the best approach you can take to receive the best outcome.