Anastasia Qvist is an outstanding lawyer. My criminal law situation (family violence order) was difficult, complex and Ana's diligence saved me as I was going through the most difficult period of my life. Ana is down to earth, commonsense and she even kept our costs to a minimum. She is a skilled litigator and knows the ins and outs of the ACT Magistrates Court. She dealt skillfully with the DPP and is an excellent negotiator. You will get a fair representation and she genuinely cares about her clients. She has my complete recommendation. The lady goes to bat for her clients.
I would strongly recommend Anastasia to anyone who is seeking legal representation. As a first-time offender who was charged with a Level 2 Drink Driving offence, she walked me through every step of the matter and was very upfront and clear on all aspects of my case. She was always accessible when I needed advice. Her approach and advice were excellent. Under her representation, I received the best possible outcome and managed to avoid a criminal conviction. She was a pleasure to deal with throughout the whole matter.
Anastasia Qvist was very professional and helpful in every step of my matter. I got a very good outcome and I can’t thank you enough for your hard work and the Armstrong Legal team in Canberra. I would highly recommend her!!!
Throughout Angela has been the consummate professional. She maintained a calm, yet strong demeanour remained informative and completely open in her communication and took complete ownership of the situation. We felt confident we finally had an advocate to steer us out of the nightmare we were in, and she did so with great respect and sincerity. I cannot speak more highly of Angela. She has literally rescued our family from what looked very much like a hopeless future.
Words can’t describe how grateful I am to Trudie Cameron being my solicitor and to Andrew Tiedt presenting my case in the court. They both have been very supportive and amazingly professional and effective. I’ve got an absolutely fantastic outcome I couldn’t even dream about.
Soon after meeting Andrew I knew he was the solicitor I wanted to handle my matter. He immediately sprang into action which brought me stability and hope during a tumultuous time in my life. Andrew was never afraid to give me straight answers to my tough questions which is a true mark of integrity. He is clearly at ease in the court environment and I believe his calm and measured demeanour went a long way to helping me secure the best result from my day in court. I would certainly recommend you approach Andrew if you need assistance.
"Andrew Tiedt was very professional and considerate to personal circumstances and gave sound advice that resulted in the best outcome possible. Highly recommended."
How to write an effective character reference
Writing an effective character reference is easy when you follow these rules.
We have discovered that a well drafted Court character reference can have an impact upon the sentence that is imposed by the Court. We believe that a Court character reference must paint a picture of the character of the person it is written about.
Don’t Say General Things Like…
Most Court character references make statements like this: “James Brown is hardworking, energetic and generous with his time and money.” We believe that these references have very little impact upon the sentence imposed by the Court. Some magistrates have been known to comment that they have never read a bad character reference.
Bring the Person’s Character to Life
You can use examples, illustrations and stories to bring to life the character of a person, for example:
“James Brown is very generous with his time and his money. I remember driving home and seeing our elderly neighbour struggling to remove graffiti from his fence. James went quiet and when we returned home he went missing for a while. About 1 hour later I saw James with our elderly neighbour scrubbing the graffiti from the fence with solvents and equipment that he had purchased from the hardware store. James spent the next 4 hours with our neighbour until it was all removed. This is just one example of how James demonstrates his generosity and compassion to others.”
How the Character Reference Should Be Set Out
- For a Local Court, the character reference should be addressed to “The Presiding Magistrate.” For a District or Supreme Court, address it to “The Presiding Judge.”
- The salutation (where you would normally put Dear Sir / Dear Madam) should be “Your Honour.”
- The reference should be typed.
- The reference should be on official letterhead, if possible.
- The reference should indicate how long you have known the person.
- The reference should indicate that you are aware that the person has been charged with the specific offence they have been charged with.
- Ask the person whether they have been charged with a similar offence previously. We will not be able to use the reference if you state that the offence is totally out of character if our client has been convicted with similar offences in the past.
- If the person has expressed remorse for what they have done or suffered anxiety as a result of being charged by police, then you should comment on your observations.
- If you are aware of any personal circumstances that may have contributed to the commission of the offence, you should state these, but be careful not to shift the blame onto others.
- If you are aware of any difficulties that may be suffered by the person as a result of a loss of licence please state these.
- If you are the person’s employer and their loss of licence will impact upon your business, please state this. If the person will lose their job as a result of losing their licence, or if they have it suspended, you must clearly state this. Please do not be vague as to what may occur in the future.
What Should Not Be in a Character Reference.
- Do not suggest the penalty to be imposed.
- Do not be critical of the law or of the victim.
- Do not make comments like “I ask the court to look inside them…”
- Do not say anything that is not true. It is an offence to mislead the Court.
- Do not make submissions or speeches.
Examples of Character References
Click on a thumbnail below to view a full sized example of a Character Reference letter.
Obtaining The Ultimate Result – a Section 10 Dismissal
A section 10 is an order by the court dismissing an offence after someone has pleaded guilty or been found guilty. For advice on the chances of obtaining a section 10 please call us on 9261 4555.
WHERE TO NEXT?
If you suspect that you may be under investigation, or if you have been charged with an offence, it is vital to get competent legal advice as early as possible. Our lawyers are highly specialised in criminal law and will be able to guide you through the process while dealing with the various authorities related to your matter.
WHY CHOOSE ARMSTRONG LEGAL?
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