What We Do

Criminal Defense

If you have been accused or charged with a crime, it is important to retain a lawyer as soon as possible. We are the strong advocates you need to demystify the criminal justice process and stand by your side from start to finish. Our aim is to not only achieve the best resolution of your case, but to do so in the most efficient and least stressful manner. Whether you come to us with a traffic infraction or a major felony, we will work tirelessly to achieve the best outcome possible.

Felony

There are six classes of felony crimes in Virginia, from Class Six felonies that are punishable by one to five years in prison and $2500 in fines, to Class One felonies punishable by death or life in prison and $100,000 in fines. There are also additional “unclassified” felonies that name their own penalties, which can carry the potential for significant prison sentence. Similarly, Federal law has Class E Felonies (1-5 years incarceration and $250,000 fines) to Class A Felonies (life imprisonment or death and $250,000 fines).

A felony charge of any nature is extremely serious due to the potential for lengthy prison sentences and life-long repercussions. You need to secure well-prepared, competent legal counsel as soon as possible if you have been charged with a felony or if you have reason to think charges are forthcoming. Sneathern and Lhospital has assisted clients with a range of felony charges, including:

    Murder
    Manslaughter
    Malicious Wounding
    Drug Distribution
    Drug Possession
    Armed Robbery
    Embezzlement
    Money Laundering
    Grand Larceny
    Breaking and Entering

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Misdemeanor

Misdemeanors carry penalties that range from fines to one year in jail. While less serious than felonies, they still have the potential to affect your life and career, and you should have an attorney looking out for your well-being. We handle all misdemeanor crimes, including:

    Assault and Battery
    Underage Possession of Alcohol
    Petit Larceny
    Obstruction of Justice
    Possessing a Fake ID
    Marijuana Possession
    Drunk in Public
    Shoplifting
    Disorderly Conduct
    Trespassing

Traffic

Traffic citations can be infractions with fines or misdemeanors that carry up to one year potential jail sentence. Accumulating DMV points can also lead to driver’s license suspensions and other unwanted consequences. Call us to discuss:

    Driving while Intoxicated (DUI)
    Reckless Driving
    No operator’s license
    Driving with a suspended license

Appeals and Habeas Corpus

If you have recently been convicted of a crime, there may still be hope. District Court misdemeanor convictions may be appealed within ten days to the Circuit Court of the same jurisdiction, where the case will be heard fresh, or de novo. You can also request a jury, where you did not have that option in the district court.

If you were convicted in the Circuit Court of any crime, you have thirty days to appeal to the Virginia Court of Appeals, which will consider your case on the record for legal errors and miscarriages of justice. Appeals are complicated and time-consuming, with tightly regimented schedules for briefs and other submissions to the Court. Do not let too much time pass after a conviction.

Habeas Corpus is a last resort following a criminal conviction, after all other appeals have been exhausted. Some Constitutional issues that were not raised at trial or direct appeal can be considered in habeas corpus proceedings, such as prosecutorial, judicial, or jury misconduct, or ineffective assistance of counsel. Habeas is a long shot, but experienced counsel can maximize your chances of relief.

Juvenile

Do not underestimate the potential of juvenile offenses to affect a young person’s future. An adjudication can follow a juvenile long after they reach the age of majority. Legal counsel can help make the best out of a bad situation.
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Civil

Although at the end of the day no one goes to jail, civil proceedings can be just as contentious and disruptive as criminal proceedings. We recognize the importance of family, health, and financial matters to our clients and devote our time and energy to pursuing their best interests in the courtroom. We handle a range of civil matters, from domestic relations and family law to real estate litigation to just about any civil matter that ends up in the courtroom. We are a litigation firm. We live in the courtroom, and we don’t sleep well at night unless we know we are doing everything we can for our clients.

Divorce

Whether you have an undisputed no-fault divorce or a complex unravelling of family and financial affairs, we will work with you to efficiently achieve your best resolution. Divorces are not one-size-fits-all, and we will attend to your personal goals and needs. We aim to give you peace of mind from your very first consultation by taking time to discuss the process and by communicating a plan of action so you can regain control and rebuild your life. The process can be as simple as drafting or reviewing separation agreements and walking you through depositions and paperwork, or as complex as multi-day litigation involving millions of dollars and division of sophisticated retirement and investment assets. Whatever the case, we have the knowledge and experience to effectively and efficiently resolve your case.
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Child Custody and Visitation

Child custody issues are some of the most emotionally-charged issues that come across our desks. We recognize the immense importance of your children in your life and legacy, and we fight for your future with your children.

Personal Injury

After sustaining an injury, sometimes settlement is your best option to move on with your life. Sometimes you need to take the fight to the other party and fight for the justice that you are being denied. We will carefully evaluate your case and roadmap a plan to put you back on your feet.

Property and Real Estate

    Property Partition
    Boundary Disputes

Business

    Contract disputes
    Registered Agency
    LLC/LLP Formation

Landlord-Tenant

    Unlawful Detainer (Eviction)
    Security Deposit Disputes

Civil Rights

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