So you’ve been arrested – great. It certainly isn’t the highlight of your day; especially considering the potential consequences you may be facing: probation, fines, and a tainted record. Once you’re past the initial feeling of wanting to be swallowed by a black hole, you may want to begin the process of planning out the necessary next steps. Don’t be afraid to exercise your right to remain silent and ask for a criminal lawyer. The Fifth Amendment grants you that power, and you should take full advantage of it. In fact, this is a common method used by many people to avoid putting their foot in their mouth before they are even properly booked.
If you’re not a fan of the state appointing you a criminal lawyer, then you’ll be required to find one on your own. This is where the very daunting but rewarding task of finding a good criminal lawyer begins.
The first thing you should look into is the criminal lawyer’s prior experience. How many years have they been in practice? Do they appear experienced enough to handle your case? No one wants an amateur representing them in court. Furthermore, you should focus on the attorney’s relevant experience as it pertains to your case. You will find that different lawyers specialize in different areas of law. Therefore, it is always good to inquire about an attorney’s work on past cases, ideally within the past year, that are similar to your own in order to determine whether this legal professional is qualified to take on your case.
Next, choose someone who is honest. Often, we are led astray by an attorney’s promise to get a certain result even before they have properly reviewed your case. It is best to find a lawyer who will review your case and give you an honest assessment, no matter how grim that assessment might be. This ties in quite nicely with the fact that you need to be aware of your attorney’s reputation. A quick Internet search of their name will yield any complaints about them.
While all these things play an important role in finding the right lawyer for you, let’s be honest for a second: the number one thing you’re concerned about is price, right? Well, there are a few ways law offices will charge you: an hourly fee, a fixed fee, and the contingent fee. The first is based on the number of hours put into the case, the second is a flat rate fee, and the last one is based on giving a percentage of the amount you recovered in the trial to the lawyer. This, in addition to the processing fees, can make affording legal services quite difficult.
However, if an attorney has the necessary work experience, honesty, and reputation, these qualities should demonstrate that they are competent in their line of work. Perhaps price won’t seem like such a burden to you in the end?