Courts-Martial Defense

I have represented military service-members from all four services throughout the world.  I have had incredible success this last year with victories ranging from murder cases, sexual assault (120 cases) and child pornography, This year I have had not guilty verdicts in a shaken baby case and Sexual Assault (Article 120) cases.

Court-Martial Lawyers

A Courts-Martial is very different from a civilian trial. The “military” language of the military court room makes it difficult for many attorneys to understand. A court-martial is a special type of trial for members of the military as well as for others who have committed a crime covered under military law. If you are a member of the military and have been accused of or are currently under investigation for any type of crime, it is important that you talk to an experienced military lawyer immediately – one who can protect your rights and represent you at your court-martial.

One of the major mistakes that most service-members make is that they believe that making a statement to the military investigative services can help exonerate themselves. This is just not true. The investigation is designed to prove that you are guilty and not provide exculpatory information. Invoke your Article 31 rights.

National court-martial attorney James Phillips is a former Army JAG who has worked on both sides of military cases, as both prosecution and defense. He has represented all four services throughout the world, representing military members in courts-martial in the US, Kuwait, Germany, Italy, England and Iraq. Mr. Phillips offers the zealous and dedicated representation that a private civilian attorney provides along with the specialized knowledge and experience of a military lawyer.


Court-martial proceedings are very different from civilian criminal court proceedings. Probably the most notable difference is that a unanimous vote by the jurors is not needed to come to a guilty verdict (unless the penalty is the death sentence.) Other differences and rights of the accused include:

  • The jury must have a minimum of only 5 members.
  • The jury is appointed by the convening authority (usually the base commander.)
  • The majority vote required for a guilty verdict is 2/3.
  • The accused has the right to request that enlisted members comprise 1/3 of the jury.
  • The accused has the right to remain silent, as under Article 31.
  • The accused has the right to a free, court-appointed lawyer or can hire a lawyer of his/her choosing.

What is the benefit of choosing military attorney James Phillips over a free Trial Defense Attorney provided to you? Often, your military-appointed attorney may be inexperienced, even if trained in courts-martial. Your appointed attorney may also have a vested interest in pleasing or appeasing the Chain of Command, as they are superior officers (although, per military law, the judge and superiors cannot penalize the attorney in any way for zealously protecting his/her client’s rights.)

When you choose private military attorney James Phillips, you are working with an experienced professional whose vested interest is in YOUR side of the case. You are working with a military lawyer who will fight for each and every right and help you avoid a guilty verdict at any cost.

Military law attorney James Phillips is a former Army JAG (Judge Advocate General) and currently handles cases for members of the military and their family members around the world.

With his military background, attorney James Phillips may be the perfect attorney for your military case. While stationed at Fort Campbell as a JAG, attorney Phillips served in Operation Iraqi Freedom with the 101st Airborne Division (AASLT) and spent three years at the Fort Campbell Office of the Staff Judge Advocate. Attorney Phillips’ dedication to protecting soldiers overseas or in the states is not easily matched. Because of his personal experience with military law, Mr. Phillips is not intimidated by the Court-Martial process or by military judges and lawyers. He has also served on both sides of military proceedings, as both defense and prosecutor, giving him a complete and effective view on the cases he takes on.

National Military Trials

Military trials are a specialized form of criminal trial; they require the attention and legal counsel of a lawyer who is experienced with military law and trials in particular. Although military investigations and trials are different than civilian trials, a service member who has been accused of a crime still has the right to remain silent. This is covered under Article 31, which states:

  1. No person subject to this chapter may compel any person to incriminate himself or to answer any questions the answer to which may tend to incriminate him.
  2. No person subject to this chapter may interrogate or request any statement from an accused or a person suspected of an offense without first informing him of the nature of the accusation and advising him that he does not have to make any statement regarding the offense of which he is accused or suspected, and that any statement made by him may be used as evidence against him in a trial by court-martial.

You also have the right to an attorney. Make sure you exercise these rights by hiring an experienced military law attorney and by using your Article 31 right to remain silent.  military lawyer James Phillips offers a free initial consultation to discuss your case.

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