Want to Hire a Criminal Defense Lawyer? Ask These Questions First

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Being charged with a crime can be disconcerting, cause you to lose your job, adversely affect your life, and puts your liberty at risk. Depending on the severity of the case, it can put your life and that of your loved ones in danger. When this happens, you need a good criminal defense lawyer to help fight for your rights and protect your interests. However, it’s not enough to just search for criminal defense attorneys on Google. 

You need to make sure that the criminal defense attorney can help you. After all, your freedom and life may depend on their ability to defend you. To help you identify a good criminal defense lawyer, here are a few questions that you should ask before hiring the lawyer.  

How Long Have You Been Practicing?

Criminal defense is not for the newbie lawyer without any experience. Often, cases are won and plea deals reached because the lawyer has a lot of experience and understands how to navigate the often stormy waters of a criminal case. 

Find out how long the law firm has been practicing criminal law. And by criminal law, we mean your specific case type. If you’ve been accused of financial crimes, for instance, you need a criminal defense lawyer that understands and knows financial crimes through and through.

Have You Taken on a Case Like This Before?

While most legal cases are often unique, the reality is that cases in the same areas of specialization are sometimes similar. So when you’re speaking to a potential new attorney, you should make sure that they have a track record of winning cases within that area. 

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For example, if you’ve been charged with white-collar crimes, you want an attorney whose area of specialization is that wheelhouse. Ask them about the possible issues that can come up in cases like yours. You’ll often be able to tell if the lawyer can handle your case.  

How Many Cases Have You Successfully Acquitted? 

Ask them about past cases where they were able to acquit their former clients or got them favorable plea deals. 

Also, see if it’s possible to talk to the lawyer’s former clients –many may not allow this because they’re often bound by a confidentiality agreement. If you can’t speak to past clients, look up some mentions of their cases online. 

Criminal defense lawyers often handle highly controversial cases. Look up those cases and see how they performed. Also, check out the case studies and testimonials on their website and other review sites like Google Reviews. 

What are the Odds of My Case Going to Trial?

Find out if there’s a way to avoid going to trial without compromising the case. The problem with criminal proceedings that go to trial is that they can be time-consuming, unpredictable, costly, and public. 

Talk to the prospective lawyer about the possibility of settling out of court and explore your options. If the lawyer can cut a favorable deal on your behalf without you ever stepping foot in a court, that’s even better. 

An experienced criminal defense attorney will be able to explain your options to you and offer top-notch legal solutions that will help your case.

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Who Will Be Handling My Case?

You want to make sure that your case isn’t just a case number that’s handled by random lawyers in the law firm. Find out who will directly be in charge of your case, and speak with them directly. 

Criminal defense cases are very tricky and unpredictable. You want an attorney who is invested and dedicated to getting you a fair outcome; not a lawyer who doesn’t know your last name. Good attorneys always take the time to familiarize themselves with your case and do everything possible to get you a fair outcome.

Do I have a Chance of Acquittal?

Every case is different. But you need to speak to your attorney about the possibility of an acquittal –particularly if you’ve been wrongly accused. When you speak to a good attorney, they’ll lay out all the available options that they can explore on your behalf. 

This is incredibly important, as you want a criminal defense lawyer who is willing to pull out all the stops for you. Also, ask about the attorney’s processes. Remember that every case is different. So, things like case timelines, defense processes, and much more, matter a lot. 

When you find a criminal defense attorney who answers all your questions satisfactorily, hire them and let them work for you.