Say you're a paladin, and you want to cast searing smite (PHB, p. 274).
Can I roll my attack, see the result, and decide if I want to spend my bonus action on searing smite before the outcome is determined?
Taking this a step further, can I do it after the outcome is known (so I know I will hit)?
Relevant quotes from Jeremy Crawford, D&D 5E Development Lead:
Crawford's quotes above are about timing related to things like spending a bonus action between attacks, or defining how certain abilities determine when the "hit" is calculated in the damage formula.
Can something as general as a bonus action interfere with the "steps" of the attack roll if it has no required trigger?
We know that something like the shield spell can directly interfere with these steps (as the spell's trigger requires an attack that "hits" you, but then the AC bonus applied can then negate that hit from occurring). However, is that specifically due to the shield spell's trigger and magical effect, or is it using a general rule?
Other related questions: