Court-Martial Defense Lawyer

Courts-martial are a unique court system, established to prosecute criminal cases involving service members. Many people are unaware of the drastic differences between civilian and military courts. Unless an attorney is familiar with the military court system, he or she might not be aware of all of these differences. Mr. Cassara has successfully defended accused service members in military courts of all services. He has represented service members across the country and in Europe, achieving favorable results in a number of complicated cases, including those cases involving:

Military Defense Attorney

The differences between the court-martial system and the civilian court systems are substantial. For example, in a court-martial, the "jurors" are other service members, who are specifically picked by the base commander to sit on courts-martial. In addition, the Article 32 (b) investigation, which occurs prior to a court-martial, has no real counterpart in the civilian world. Therefore, if you are pending court-martial it is important for you to have a lawyer who is familiar with these differences.

Types Of Courts-Martial

There are three levels of court-martial available to a command to utilize for disciplinary action, a summary court-martial, a special court-martial and a general court-martial. The distinction between the levels of court-martial is, essentially, a question of how much punishment one can receive at the various levels.

  • Summary court-martial: In a summary court-martial, the maximum punishment that may be imposed depends upon the rank of the accused. For an enlisted accused in the pay grade of E5-E7, the accused may be reduced one pay grade, be restricted for a period of 60 days, and face a forfeiture of two-thirds of basic pay for one month. For an accused in the rank of E4 and below, the accused may be sentenced to confinement for up to 30 days, hard labor without confinement for a period of 45 days, restriction for a period of 60 days, reduction to the pay grade of E1 and forfeiture of two-thirds of basic pay for one month.
  • Special court-martial: A special court-martial is the midlevel court-martial. The maximum punishment that can be imposed is a bad conduct discharge, confinement for up to 12 months, reduction in pay grade to E1 (enlisted members only) and forfeiture of two-thirds of base pay per month for a period of 12 months and/or an equivalent fine.
  • General court-martial: A general court-martial is the most serious criminal proceeding that can be brought against an accused in the military. A general court-martial can only be convened after the charges are first investigated at an Article 32 investigation. Under the Uniform Code of Military Justice most criminal offenses that are designated have a maximum punishment listed that may be imposed and the court has the power to sentence the accused to any sentence from no punishment to that maximum punishment set forth in the UCMJ and rules for court-martial.

While all courts-martial are governed by the Uniformed Code of Military Justice, there are differences between how each branch operates at court-martial. At William E. Cassara, PC, we know these differences and can build an effective strategy for your defense.

Contact A Georgia Court-Martial Defense Attorney

If you have further questions regarding military law or defense, contact William E. Cassara, PC. We provide representation to clients throughout Georgia and nationwide in a wide range of matters. We can be reached by phone at 800-511-9293 or through our easy online contact form to schedule a free consultation.

William E. Cassara- Military Law Attorney

Recent Accomplishments


CAAF Finds that Defense Attorney Was Not Ineffective for Failing to Admit False Confession at Court-Martial

By William Cassara | May 14, 2020

The Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces (CAAF) recently decided the case of US v Carter. In 2015, Private First Class Gerald Carter was stationed at Fort Drum, New York but was temporarily assigned to Fort Polk, Louisiana. Both before and during the time that PFC Carter was in […]

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Supreme Court Decision Decides that Federal and State Jury Verdicts Must Be Unanimous

By William Cassara | April 30, 2020

Last week, the United States Supreme Court decided the case of Louisiana v. Ramos. Louisiana is one of two states (the other being Oregon) that do not require unanimous verdicts in criminal jury trials. In 2016, Evangelisto Ramos was found guilty of second degree murder by a jury that voted […]

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Court of Appeals


By William Cassara | April 15, 2020

We are thrilled to report that The Judge Advocate General (TJAG) of the Army reversed the conviction of a client of ours after a long wait based on our UCMJ Article 69 appeal. Our client, a senior NCO and a Special Forces recruiter was acquitted of larceny of military property. […]

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