Having been charged with a crime like a felony or a misdemeanor can change your life forever. Having a criminal record can prove to be detrimental to your interests, especially when you are seeking financial assistance in the form of a home loan or looking at prospective employment opportunities. This is why you need to ensure that you are hiring credible and experienced criminal defense lawyers that can help argue your case and make sure you walk away scot-free.
How To Pick The Best Criminal Defense Lawyer?
One of the most elementary and careless mistakes that you can make is trying to defend yourself. Without experience and know-how of the legal process, this is something that will, almost with certainty, work against you.
Given how high the stakes are, it is always a better idea not to try a DIY approach to criminal defense cases. A better idea would be to hire a local criminal defense lawyer or legal experts that will be able to help you with everything from evidence gathering to case presentations.
One of the top reasons for getting legal advice is during a police interview. Based from Savannah Legal, police can ask you basic questions (name, address, and contact details) but you can opt to only answer vital criminal questions with the guidance and assistance of a criminal lawyer.
5 Questions To Ask A Prospective Criminal Defense Lawyer
In this article, we are going to look at five questions you need to ask a prospective criminal defense lawyer. We take help from a leading Virginia Criminal Lawyer and request them to list down the five questions.
Question 1: Do you have exact experience in the kind of criminal case I am involved with?
When it comes to criminal defense cases, the first thing that you should know is that each one of them differs in its nature, scope, and other processes. This means that you need to go with a lawyer that enjoys prior experience in representing individuals in similar cases.
This will help your criminal defense lawyer to prepare the case in a much better way. Prior experience will prevent them from committing mistakes and leveraging the points that worked successfully in the last case.
Question 2: Will you be directly handling my case or delegate the same to a junior attorney?
Some of the best legal firms of our times are notorious for doing something like this. While they use their best lawyers to win your case, they then delegate the same to someone junior in their team.
The result is that you do not stand to benefit from the experience and expertise of the senior criminal defense lawyer on the team. If things do not go as planned, your criminal defense might suffer. When things go bad, the senior lawyer comes on and tries to take the case forward.
Question 3: What do you think is the best assessment case scenario for the criminal case?
This is a question that you need to ask your prospective criminal defense lawyer during the first meeting. The best legal experts will give you a piece of their mind after going through all the facts and evidence.
They might tell you to take a ‘Plea Bargain’ if they feel that this is your best shot. Alternatively, if they feel that you have a strong case on your hands, they might encourage you to go to trial and argue the same in front of a Jury.
Question 4: How will you be charging me- on an hourly basis, or is there a flat fee?
If you want to work with the best criminal defense lawyers, you need to understand that the same is not inexpensive. They have accumulated decades’ worth of experience and might charge higher than some.
This is why you need to ask them about their fee structure at the very start. While some charge hourly and will bill you for every minute on the phone call, others will charge a flat fee and even offer the first consultation free!
Question 5: Is there a rule regarding communication and how it should be done?
While you might think that you can get on the phone with your criminal defense lawyer whenever you want, the reality is that it doesn’t work that way. Some lawyers prefer to get in touch with the clients themselves when required, while others want the clients to call them at a fixed time of the day.
Make sure that you are familiarizing yourself with what is required in terms of the communication channels. You do not want to make the lawyer angry on this front.
The Bottom Line
In this legal resource, we have tried to list down some important questions that will be able to give you a definite opinion about whether a criminal defense lawyer you are talking to is the right selection for you or not. If you have any more questions which you would like us to answer on the topic, please let us know in the comments below. We would be happy to help you out with regard to your criminal defense case.