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Are you looking to hire a criminal defense lawyer, but aren’t sure who to choose? Finding the right criminal defense lawyer can feel like an overwhelming process. With so many lawyers available, how do you know which one is right for you?
Luckily, there are some steps you can take to ensure that you hire the right lawyer. Check out this guide to learn the top tips for hiring a criminal defense lawyer.
1. Find the Right Specialist
Once you’ve received an indictment, the first thing you want to do is find a criminal defense attorney with the right specialty. The criminal defense field is quite vast, so you need to make sure you find someone who will be familiar with the legal nuances of your case.
For example, if you’ve been arrested for a DUI, you want to make sure your lawyer has experience defending those with DUIs.
When looking for an attorney, make sure you ask specific questions that will inform you of the attorney’s experience with cases of your nature. And, go even further by asking about the outcomes of each case.
Unfortunately, it’s quite common to come across lawyers who claim they specialize in certain areas, but in reality, they have only handled a few cases in this specialization.
2. Check Client Feedback
Before you hire a criminal defense lawyer, it’s very important that you check out their client feedback. After all, the best way to know what to expect from a lawyer is to see how they’ve handled cases in the past.
Most lawyers will have their own website and a page dedicated to client testimonials. But, keep in mind that lawyers are only going to display positive reviews on their site. To get the full picture, we also suggest checking out reviews on Yelp and Google My Business. You can also check out attorney rating sites like Avvo.com.
And, to get a fuller picture of what a specific lawyer is like, as the lawyer for references that you can call.
The attorney you hire shouldn’t only have experience with criminal defense, but they should also have experience in the court in which your case is pending.
Each court has its own unique staff and procedures, so it’s important that your attorney is familiar with the local court system. If your attorney knows the court procedures, as well as how the judges and prosecutors operate, you’ll have a big advantage in your case.
Finding the best lawyer for your case
Each attorney has their own communication style. Nothing is more important than the communication between you and your attorney, so you want to make sure their communication style works with you.
A breakdown in communication can have serious implications on your case, so you should ask attorneys about their communication methods before hiring. If attorneys are slow to respond or always route you to their secretaries in the initial phases, then that’s a red flag and you should look for another attorney.
When you speak to an attorney for the first time on the phone, they should give you their email address and cellphone number. This is a sign that they’re willing to keep the lines of communication open throughout your case.
Last but not least, you need to ask attorneys how they handle billing.
Some attorneys prefer to bill their clients a fixed amount, while others prefer to be paid via retainer. Before signing on with an attorney, it’s important to understand what the attorney expects for financial compensation. This way, you won’t feel ambushed at the end of the case.
Now that you have these tips in mind, it’s time to find the right criminal defense attorney for you!