Do you need to hire an attorney to defend you against criminal charges? It might seem like an easy question, but the truth is that it depends on your situation and the way in which you were arrested.
A lot of people make the mistake of contacting attorneys as soon as they get pulled over, but this might not be your best move if you’re only facing minor charges. Instead, find out whether you need to hire a criminal attorney by reading this guide to finding the right lawyer for your situation.
Know the type of attorney you need
Depending on your case, you might need to find an attorney who specializes in criminal defense or personal injury. It’s important to understand what these terms mean so that you can better find an attorney with expertise that matches your case. Here are some types of lawyers and what they do
Why do you need an attorney?
If you or someone you love has been charged with committing a crime, hiring an attorney is extremely important. While you might be innocent and hoping to plead your case in court, you may not know how to react in front of law enforcement, judges, or prosecutors. On top of that, there are many legal aspects to most crimes that you might not understand without experience.
Start with your lawyer early
Once you are under investigation, it is difficult to find an attorney. As soon as you feel that you might be under investigation, hire an attorney to represent you.
If you don’t know where to begin your search for a lawyer, start with referrals from friends and family or people in positions within your company that may have legal issues arising from time to time.
Choosing the right lawyer is crucial
In criminal cases, it’s particularly important to hire an attorney with experience handling these cases. It’s common for defendants to be represented by public defenders or court-appointed attorneys in misdemeanor and felony cases.
However, these attorneys are usually overworked and underfunded, which means they might not have adequate time to devote to your case. Instead, you should hire your own criminal attorney with experience handling cases like yours.
Do your research
Sometimes you may think that you can go ahead and handle things on your own. Unfortunately, when it comes to criminal charges, that’s not always possible. The consequences are severe, and they may be life-changing.
That’s why if you or someone you know has been charged with a crime in Southern California, make sure to do your research as soon as possible in order to find out what steps must be taken from here.
Many Americans mistakenly believe that if they haven’t been charged with a crime or served with legal papers, there’s no need to contact an attorney. This is not true, and delays can be costly.
Never wait until you face criminal charges before getting in touch with an attorney, and make sure you find one who specializes in your area of concern—whether it’s traffic violations or drug offenses. You want someone on your side who knows all about your unique circumstances and will advise you how to proceed.
Why are criminal attorneys so important?
You are probably wondering why hiring an attorney when you have already been arrested is so important. Your future and your freedom are at stake, and hiring an attorney who specializes in criminal law is absolutely crucial to protecting both.
Even if you feel that you are not guilty or that you should be able to get out of it on your own, trust us when we say that these types of cases can be quite complex, and an experienced criminal attorney will know how to navigate them.
What will they do for you?
A good criminal attorney can help build a case against your charges. This is especially helpful if you feel you’re being wrongly charged with a crime.
When it comes to defending yourself in court, an attorney may be able to reduce your sentence or eliminate it altogether by arguing on your behalf.
How much will it cost?
Law offices have wide ranges in price, but it’s important to find an attorney who specializes in your area. To get started, make a list of questions you have about your case, and then call around to local law firms to ask for free initial consultations.
Be sure to ask if they specialize in criminal law, as well as how many years they’ve been practicing. Note: some law firms offer fixed rates so that you won’t have any surprises later on down the line.