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In some states, courts are required to advise defendants of certain constitutional rights at arraignment, such as the right to trial, the right to counsel and the right against self-incrimination. In some state courts, defendants are advised of their rights as a group before appearing in front of the judge.

In some states, the defendant has a constitutional right to be represented by counsel at arraignment. If the defendant wants an attorney present, the court cannot arraign the defendant without giving the defendant an opportunity to obtain counsel or appointing a public defender.