Choosing a Criminal Lawyer For Your Defense
If you are in the unfortunate circumstance of facing criminal charges, the decision process in finding a criminal lawyer for your defense is crucial. Not only will this individual be the one to represent your case in court, but they will essentially help in determining the outcome of the case… at least to some extent. Regardless, finding an attorney that you are confident in can mean the difference between time in jail, and a small period of probation. In this article, we will outline a few of the tips to consider when weeding through the candidates.
Step 1 – Obtain a few recommendations from close friends and family members. Chances are that you know of someone who has had some sort of experience with a defense lawyer in the past. Talk to them about the situation that was dealt with and find out the specifics regarding how the attorney dealt with the case. This is a great way to gain perspective on candidates.
Step 2 – Hop online and gather information on lawyers in your area. The internet is a great resource to view past client reviews, check up on education and certifications, and gain a better understanding of the specialties various attorneys practice.
Step 3 – Contact your state bar and inquire as to whether the attorneys you are interested in have been admitted. This will also give you the opportunity to find out whether these attorneys are facing any charges, while viewing any past or current complaints. Additionally, these associations will often times provide individuals with recommendations of their own to help in your search.
Step 4 – Once you’ve gathered a list of candidates, contact your top three choices and schedule interviews with each. Many attorneys will provide prospective clients with initial consultation services free of charge. This will allow you the opportunity to obtain a better perspective of the attorney in question while evaluating how you interact with each other. Additionally, you will want to bring along a list of questions and discussion topics to pose to your attorney regarding the specifics of the case alongside aspects such as pricing, certifications, areas of practice, etc. Pay attention to the manner in which they speak with you. A quality attorney should make you feel confident in their abilities, and be personable enough to make you feel at ease with the circumstances at hand.
Step 5 – Get yourself a list of references from the attorney. The majority of attorneys will have no issue providing clients with a list of satisfied individuals who have used the attorney in the past. Call each contact, and ask questions regarding the specifics experiences with the lawyer. Find out whether they were satisfied with the results, and if they had the opportunity to choose again, if they would feel confident in their decision with the attorney.
Step 6 – Make your decision. Factors in all important aspects and make your decision based in the information you’ve obtained throughout the process. Avoid making a choice based solely on price alone. Remember, you tend to get what you pay for. Find yourself the best available.