How long does a court-martial last?

It depends. In the military, the typical felony-level criminal investigation lasts six months to a year. In more complex cases, an investigation can last a year or more. When an investigation is finished, it could take several weeks or even months to decide whether to prefer criminal charges.

If charges are preferred, the case will likely go to trial in the next 4-6 months. A significant factor impacting how long it takes to get a case to trial is the availability of the defense lawyers, the Military Judge, and witnesses.

A typical court-martial trial lasts 4-5 days. This depends on the case’s complexity, the number of witnesses, and whether a judge or jury will decide the case. In addition, some judges and lawyers are more efficient than others. Regardless, a court-martial trial rarely lasts longer than one week.

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