Donald Trump's legal woes: Hush money, election cases top 2024 docket

Former President Donald Trump attends the proceedings at the New York State Supreme Court on December 7. Photo by Louis Lanzano/UPI
1 of 5 | Former President Donald Trump attends the proceedings at the New York State Supreme Court on December 7. Photo by Louis Lanzano/UPI | License Photo

Former President Donald Trump's campaign for the Republican nomination for re-election will be working against multiple trial dates in the months leading up to Election Day in November.

The first-in-the-nation Iowa caucus is Jan. 15. Trump has expressed confidence that he will ultimately be the Republican nominee to challenge President Joe Biden. In the meantime, he will be juggling court appearances in at least four criminal cases.


Trump is also monitoring challenges to his ballot eligibility in Colorado and Maine, based on an interpretation of the 14th Amendment that engaging in insurrection disqualifies someone from the presidency. Eleven more states have similar court challenges pending. Trump is expected to appeal.

Trump has maintained his innocence in the criminal cases against him and has worked to delay all proceedings until after the election.

Here is a look at the trials of Trump in 2024.



Start date: March 25

Trump faces 34 felony counts related to falsifying business records in an alleged attempt to hide hush money payments made to adult film actress Stormy Daniels during his 2016 presidential campaign.

Manhattan, N.Y., District Attorney Alvin Bragg was the first to criminally indict the former president, bringing charges against him in March 2023. The indictment made Trump the first former president to face criminal charges.

The trial is tentatively slated to begin on March 25. Whether that date sticks remains to be seen as a federal election interference case against Trump in Washington is scheduled to begin earlier in March.


Start date: May 20

The second indictment of Trump occurred in his home state of Florida, where he faces a 37-count federal indictment.

Special counsel Jack Smith announced the charges related to Trump's alleged mishandling of classified documents in June 2023. The prosecutor alleges that Trump mishandled more than 100 classified documents, including national security secrets.

Trump's Mar-a-Lago home in Palm Beach was searched by the FBI in August 2022. Agents recovered 15 boxes containing classified documents.

Trump's aide Walter Nauta and a Mar-a-Lago maintenance worker, Carlos De Oliveira, have also been charged in the case.


This trial is scheduled to begin on May 20, but U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon, a Trump appointee, has said she is open to adjusting the schedule.


Start date: March 4

Smith oversaw the investigation into Trump's role in attempting to stop the certification of the 2020 election and incite the riot at the U.S. Capitol in Washington. Trump is charged with conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, obstruction of an official proceeding and conspiracy against the right to vote.

Trump has continued to repeat unfounded claims that the 2020 election was stolen. The grand jury wrote in its indictment that Trump has the right to make such claims, however it alleges he also "pursued unlawful means of discounting legitimate votes and subverting the election results."

U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan put the proceedings on hold while the court of appeals seeks a ruling on Trump's claim of presidential immunity.

Trump has claimed presidential immunity shields him from prosecution in this case. Smith brought the issue to the U.S. Supreme Court in an attempt to expedite the process and maintain a March 4 trial date. But the justices chose to allow a lower court to address the issue.


Oral arguments are scheduled to be heard on Trump's presidential immunity claim on Jan. 9.


Start date: August

Trump and 18 other defendants were indicted in August on charges of attempting to overturn the results of the 2020 election in Georgia. They were charged under the state's Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, which indicts them together as taking part in a wider criminal conspiracy.

The former president is accused of being directly involved in multiple attempts to overturn the election results, including pressuring Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to "find" 11,780 votes for him.

Four other defendants have pleaded guilty in the case: Trump's former attorneys Sidney Powell and Jenna Ellis, attorney Kenneth Chesebro and Georgia bail bondsman Scott Hall.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis initially sought to try all 19 defendants together. She also wanted to start the trial in fall 2023. Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee has expressed hesitancy about trying any more than eight defendants at a time.

In December 2023, he spoke in favor of dividing the remaining defendants into two groups, urging both to be ready for trial.



Start date: Jan. 16

Last spring, a Manhattan jury unanimously ruled that Trump is liable for battering and defaming writer E. Jean Carroll. District Judge Lewis Kaplan clarified that while the ruling stops short of finding Trump liable for rape by the standard of New York state law, it did find the accusation that he raped Carroll to be substantially true.

The court ruled that Trump must pay $5 million in compensation, repair and punitive damages. After the verdict, Trump went on to make more defamatory statements about Carroll.

Carroll is seeking additional compensation for comments Trump made about her during his presidency and after the verdict.


Closing arguments: Jan. 11

The Trump Organization has been found guilty of committing tax fraud. Testimony concluded in the sentencing phase of the case in December 2023.

Final arguments are set for Jan. 11. All that remains after that is sentencing.

Trump was a fixture in the courtroom in recent months, using his time on the witness stand to lambast Judge Arthur Engoron and the prosecution. New York Attorney General Letitia James, who brought the case against Trump and his real estate business, is seeking $250 million.


Trump and the Trump Organization, which is headed by his sons Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump, was found guilty of inflating property values, including the value of Trump Tower in New York.

Donald Trump appears in NYC court for civil fraud trial

Former President Donald Trump speaks to the media when he arrives for the opening of his civil fraud trial in New York City on October 2, 2023. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Latest Headlines