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How To Choose The Right Criminal Lawyer

How To Choose The Right Criminal Lawyer

One can need a criminal lawyer for many reasons. Either because he himself has committed a crime or maybe one of his family members. Whatever the reason is, one needs to make sure to choose the right expert as there are so many on the market. Reading this article will help anyone to make a better choice.

For most of the people the most important information about such professional is his cost. The truth is most people do not have millions of dollars, hence they want to think carefully who they choose. Looking into solicitor magazines or on online comparison sites will enable one to compare many different attorneys and their prices.

The simplest thing one can do to find an attorney is to speak to friends and family members. The good thing is that one of them has probably used the services of such expert before. If he was satisfied with the service, he could tell one the phone number and the name of the attorney. This way one can save lots of research time.

However much one is influenced by the cost factor he is not advised to choose an inexperienced attorney. The reason for this is that he probably has not had many cases in the past, hence he does not have much experience. Barristers who have been in this job for many years might cost a bit more but they are worth the money.

Every attorney who has had cases before has got ratings and some feedback. Most of them will publish their ratings and the feedback on their websites but if they do not, one should ask the expert to make them available. These comments are made clients who have used his service in the past. If the comments are generally positive one is right to hire the person.

The websites of attorneys can reveal much more than just the opinions of other people. Looking at it one should be able to evaluate the quality of it. Whether it has got lots of details and a nice structure or not. A poorly constructed website suggests that the barrister does not care much about his work.

There is another secure indicator of high quality. If the expert belongs to a certain group of lawyers it is very likely that his service is superb and his customers are always satisfied. The reason for this is that barrister groups only allow other lawyers to join if they can prove that the quality of their work is excellent. The disadvantage of such lawyer is that he can be very expensive.

A very important thing to watch out for is the payment. After one has fixed the hourly rate or the contingency fee he should try to persuade the lawyer to accept payment after he has won the case.

Having read the article one should be able to make a good choice when looking for a criminal lawyer. One should remember to show some professionalism when discussing the contract as this might result in lower charges from the attorneys side. Better impression always brings better results.…

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Criminal Law – Basics

Criminal Law – Basics

Penal law, which is also known as criminal law, in short pertains to law that deals with crimes and their punishment. Criminal law is responsible for setting and maintaining definitions of crimes, as well as their punishment, which is inherently linked to the perceived impact to the great community and the individuals which make it up.

No moral examination takes place in criminal law practice, and neither does it prevent the ability of the people to commit the crimes it prohibits. This would go against every major constitution in the world as it will intrinsically also limit the people’s freedom. The law of criminal procedure basically consists of the apprehension of an individual or group, laying of the charges, and finally trying those suspected of committing an act deemed inappropriate.

The investigation comes before all this, though, and no case of this nature can be won without solid evidence. This proof must be beyond reasonable doubt, a major ingredient in the salad that is the legal system where it concerns criminals. The accused person or persons must be guilty of two separate things: firstly, the act; it must be proven to a jury that the accused has committed an act set out by society and its leaders as being criminal; second, the person under investigation must have had the intent to commit the crime, which is otherwise known as guilty mind. This malicious intent is the final nail in the coffin for most cases as it is rather difficult to prove, but when it has been demonstrated beyond the shadow of a doubt, there is little recourse for the defendant.

The above can be discounted for crimes of so-called strict liability, wherein evidence of an ‘actus reus’ is enough.

Criminal law systems do make the distinction between crimes where negligence plays a part, and those where motivation was the only driving factor. This is where things get tricky, and this is why criminal lawyers make big bucks in taking care of their clients. Sometimes the story in the defendant’s mind is not even solid, and it is up to his or her lawyer to make a solid case for redemption.…

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Choosing A Criminal Lawyer

Choosing A Criminal Lawyer

If you have been arrested and accused of a crime, you have the right to have an attorney present for any police questioning and to protect your rights in the course of a police investigation. Often if you can’t afford an attorney you can ask for a court appointed attorney but this won’t guarantee you the same quality of legal representation that hiring your own attorney can.

If you have been accused of a crime your best chance to avoid jail time and having a permanent criminal record which can impact your future ability to work, is to ensure your criminal defense attorney is able to do the job you need done. Often court appointed attorneys are underpaid, over worked and appointed to represent more clients than they can devout one on one attention to. What this ultimately means for you is that your attorney may be highly competent and believe in your innocence but may be unable to give your case the care it needs.

Since it is your freedom and your future at stake, hiring your own attorney should not be something you are willing to forgo, no matter how much of a financial burden it may be. Your criminal attorney is there to ensure your constitutional rights are upheld with every police contact and interview and to ensure you don’t incriminate yourself in an attempt to explain yourself. Many people who are arrested mistakenly believe they can talk their way out of an arrest and in the process waive their constitutional right to counsel and incriminate themselves in a crime.

Even innocent people have been convicted for crimes they didn’t commit so having an attorney does not indicate a sign of guilt; rather it shows you want to help in any investigation to clear your name, while you protect yourself and your rights.

When you are looking for a criminal lawyer, you should find out the attorney’s going rate and what they think it will cost to represent you through to a trial. You want to hire the best attorney you can afford to hire but you also need to have an idea about what the bottom line will be.

You should also make sure any attorney you decide to hire has actual courtroom experience time. Most criminal cases end in plea deals; so many lawyers don’t have any actual courtroom experience that you see on television court dramas. If you are not willing to consider the possibility of a plea deal early on in your case and want to go to trial, you want to ensure your attorney is able to do so effectively.…

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What is the Role of a Grand Jury in the Judicial System?

What is the Role of a Grand Jury in the Judicial System?

The judicial system of the United States is clearly outlined in Article three of the constitution. The role of a grand jury is explicitly defined in the fifth amendment of the Bill of Rights. A grand jury is assembled in the event of an indictment for a capital or infamous offense. Such a jury is assembled for the purpose of evaluating prosecutory evidence.

Once the evidence is assessed, it is the job of the grand jury to rule on whether or not there is sufficient grounds to continue on to a trial. This is the initial step in the justice systems method of bringing an individual to trial for an offense. The process of assembling this jury begins with a summons from the assignment judge for the hearing. Jurors are chosen to sit on a grand jury through many different methods.

They may be chosen through a random pick by a computer or through drawing numbers similar to that of a lottery system. The number of selected jurors varies depending upon the trial classification. For civil trials there are typically eight individuals who will be seated as grand jurors. With a criminal trial, the number of jurors is most likely to be 14 in number.

Regardless of the whether the potential case is civil or criminal in nature, there are alternate jurors that must be readily available in the event that a selected juror is excused from the jury. The two main types of grand jury cases involve criminal and civil cases. For cases that fall under the criminal category, the jury may hear evidence and testimony regarding capital offenses such as murder. Anyone accused of a criminal offense has the right under the constitution to a trial by jury.

A criminal court proceeding requires more substantial proof through evidence due to the serious nature of the alleged crime. Grand juries in criminal cases are scrutinized much more closely because the liberty of another person is at stake. In a civil case, the jury is assembled to hear evidence for disputes involving complaints not of a criminal nature. A civil case usually involves two parties, a plaintiff and a defendant.

The grand jury decides, based upon the evidence provided, whether there is sufficient cause to pursue to trial. Prosecutors generally favor a grand jury in bringing a case to trial for the simple fact that if the jury determines there is enough evidence to take the case through to trial, there is a better chance that the trial jury will favor the prosecution due to the evidence. The role of a grand jury in the judicial system, as outlined above, gives a clear picture of the process by which a grand jury functions. The right to a fair trial cannot be preserved without the seating of a proper grand jury.…

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Criminal Law – Criminal Lawyers

Criminal Law – Criminal Lawyers

Criminal lawyers are often called criminal defence lawyers who specialise in the defending of individuals or companies that have been charged with a criminal offence. These criminal lawyers can be permanently employed by the various jurisdictions with criminal courts. Hiring a criminal lawyer is essential if an offender has been charged with a criminal offence. Without proper representation and advice, you may be in jeopardy of not being able to represent yourself properly and potentially weaken you case. If you have been accused of an offence, it is vital to contact a lawyer specialising in criminal defence to represent you, especially if you are being held in custody, due to appear in court.

At a police station, if you have been arrested, the law requires the police to conduct a series of formalities. As a person who has been arrested, you are entitled to contact a lawyer before anything happens in the police station, including any initial interviews. Most criminal law firms are available 24 hours a day and will provide a lawyer at any time of day. If you do not have a lawyer in mind, the police will have a list of independent solicitors who will be able to assist you in your case.

It is always advisable to heed the words, ‘you have the right to remain silent’. Speaking without representation can lead to incriminating yourself and your case. It is wise to avoid making any statements or answering any questions relating to the case, until you have legal representation to guide you through which questions need to be answered and how to answer them. This is extremely important if the crime you have been accused of is serious or of a sensitive nature. By contacting a lawyer, it will mean that you will be given the proper advice and informed of the procedures that need to be taken, as well as the law relating to your case to help understand why you are being arrested.

There is no assumption that you are guilty if you contact a solicitor to come and represent you, so even if you are innocent, it is vital that a solicitor is arranged to help you through the difficult process. This solicitor will be able to assist you during interviews and help prepare you for video evidence, witnesses and consultations with other lawyers. These are areas that are not easy if you are on your own. A lot of people do not realise, but offenders can obtain a solicitor to represent them for free by being found eligible for legal aid in criminal law. An offender is only found to be eligible if they pass the interests of justice test and a means test.…

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What Are the Differences Between a Misdemeanor and a Felony?

What Are the Differences Between a Misdemeanor and a Felony?

In most states, getting in trouble with the law results in either a misdemeanor or a felony being assigned to your criminal record. Which one is determined by several factors, including the nature of the offense or crime, the degree to which it has caused harm to another and the age of the person committing the offense. The assignment is also based on local and state laws, as it is subject to review by the court system and the outcome of punishment as decided by a judge. Here are some ways that a misdemeanor and a felony are different:

A misdemeanor indicates that the punishment will result in a year or less time in jail. That’s in contrast to a felony where the offender is sentenced to a year or more of jail time. In some cases, a crime may be on the fence as far as the punishment and that is ultimately up to the judge who will listen to the testimony provided by both parties, any evidence gathered by law enforcement and the status of the offender prior to the case itself. For example, a person with multiple misdemeanors may have re-offended and therefore their new case, which may be considered a punishable misdemeanor, may be elevated to that of a felony in order to incarcerate the offender for a longer period of time. In contrast, a youthful offender may be given a second chance by a judge if this is their first time in the court system and they have begun to take steps to remediate their offense and get their life headed in a more productive direction. For reporting sakes, however, the misdemeanor means one year of jail or less while the felon has spent time in excess of a year.

In cases where willful damage has been done to another person’s property, or when property is stolen, the assignment of misdemeanor or felony may be assigned based on the whole dollar value of the damaged or mission property itself. Thusly, the degree to which the misdemeanor or felony is assigned can be based on severity. For example, a youth who has stolen $200 in property may be assigned a misdemeanor. But if he or she also vandalized the property or place or residence where the property was taken from, they may face a class 6 felony. The assignment decides the amount of time they will be detained in the jail or prison or if any subsequent fines or community service is also assigned to the offender.

Certain crimes automatically result in a felony record. These can include illegal drug distribution near a school, sexual offenses, physical assault and murder. In some states, having more than three misdemeanors automatically results in a felony conviction. In the case of sexual offenses, the offender must also register as a sex offender – a label that they will carry with them forever. It is important to note that this can seriously affect that person’s ability to have a normal life or career once they’ve served their time in jail.

In most cases, even if charges are dismissed through a lack of evidence or a mistrial, a person’s criminal record will still show the alleged offense. This can be true even if someone is a minor (under the age of 18) or pays to have the item sponged from their record. The criminal record is permanent, as are police reports and evidence against them that can be pulled up and examined anytime by law enforcement or criminal background checks. Of course, a misdemeanor may be viewed as a much lesser offense on a person’s record than a felon’s may. Employers can and do employ those with criminal records. The military can and will allow those with misdemeanors to enlist. However, felons are not so lucky. They can expect to be denied opportunities in these cases.…

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The Difference Between Civil and Criminal Offenses

The Difference Between Civil and Criminal Offenses

There are many things for which we can find ourselves in trouble with the government. While many I do not need to explain, like theft or arson, there are some smaller offenses which will provoke a police response and potentially a penalty, but without the serious implications of a criminal conviction. Surprisingly, civil offenses are in the same class as a civil lawsuit between two parties.

A criminal offense is one which is a violation of a law which can carry jail time. These are generally offenses against another person or society in general, and carry sometimes thousands of dollars in fine and time in jail. Criminal offenses are always between the state (or federal government) and a defendant, however only the defendant can appeal the case if he or she loses. Furthermore, in a jury trial the decision must be unanimous, and the proof of burden is “beyond a reasonable doubt.” In other words, the jury has to agree 100% that someone is absolutely guilty or at fault.

A civil offense falls under civil law and can only carry a fine. Even if a person fails to pay their fine, they cannot be imprisoned. Civil offenses are generally relegated to noise or trash ordinances, or traffic penalties (although there are situations in which traffic infractions are crimes, such as extreme speeding or reckless endangerment). Civil cases are very different from civil ones. For example, a civil case can be decided not just for one party or another, but partially one and partially another. Also, the jury does not usually have to be in 100% agreement, and they only have to decide “based on the preponderance of evidence,” or they must determine it is most probable (or “more likely than not”).

This is why in many cases states will try cases in civil court. Especially in complex financial cases, there is less burden of proof and the jury does not have to be as certain. This is an important protection in our legal system, so that only criminals are imprisoned and they are determined beyond the shadow of a reasonable doubt that they are guilty. Also, any party may appeal a civil case, although this does not determine whether or not it will be heard by the court.

It is important to get representation in any case. Regardless of the strength of your case, you may be caught up by legal complexities which you don’t understand. Particularly if you are facing a heavy financial loss or jail time, contact an attorney if you receive a summons.…