Irrespective of the type and severity of the crime you are charged with, consulting a good criminal defense attorney is a practical idea. Depending on your financial condition, you might approach a court-appointed counsel or a private criminal defense attorney. Another option, though not a good idea, is self-representation. Hiring a criminal defense lawyer is the most important decision to get the charge against you dropped or punishment and/or penalty lessened.
This write-up is meant to provide you with some important information to help you navigate through the process of hiring a criminal defense attorney.
Act Right Now
Don’t waste your time and instead, talk to a criminal defense attorney immediately after an arrest has been made. Finding a good lawyer is not a matter of joke and takes a lot of time. Meanwhile, there are many things to do in order to improve the consequences of your case.
Hiring Right Lawyer
As many criminal defense lawyers are working in this field, the task of hiring a good lawyer is no less daunting. The followings are some suggestions and considerations to help you make an informed and intelligent choice.
Most criminal defense lawyers offer a free primary consultation to their prospective clients. Meeting the attorney and discussing your situation with him or she doesn’t oblige you to hire the professional. However, an in-person meeting with a criminal defense lawyer will help you understand if you will feel comfortable working with the law firm or lawyer.
Prepare a list of questions to be asked as well as make a file of your case-related paperwork as any criminal defense attorney will want to review all those papers to asses the merits and demerits of your case in order to build up a defensive strategy.
Questions to Ask
It is wrong to believe that there is a surefire way to pick the best criminal defense lawyer. But asking some pertinent questions will help you make an informed decision. Followings are some important questions to ask a lawyer during your first meeting:
Areas of Practice: Defending a criminal is not a forte of all lawyers. Ask the lawyer if the criminal defense is the area of his or her specialization and practice. Some lawyers take a criminal case but only occasionally whereas others are devoted to dealing with criminal defense cases.
In the realm of criminal laws, there are differences between federal cases and state cases. The two court systems are regulated by different laws and processes. It’s a great idea to ask if a lawyer you intend to hire has enough experience of the court system where you have been slapped with a criminal charge.
Local Knowledge: Ask the lawyer if the professional is familiar with the court you are heading to. A criminal defense lawyer, who has experience of practicing in a particular area, is likely to be familiar with the tendencies and know the judges and public prosecutors.
Experience: The length of time that an Orlando criminal lawyer has been practicing criminal laws should be an important point to consider before hiring his or her service. But remember that wealth of experience is not always a reliable parameter of quality representation.
Fees: Make sure to know how much the lawyer will charge to represent your case as well as his or her fee structure.