If you have been charged with a crime, one of the most important things you can do right now is choose the right criminal attorney to represent you. A reputable criminal defense lawyer residents trust on your side can mean the difference between spending time in jail and going free. However, with so many different criminal attorneys out there, it can be difficult to choose the right one. If the lawyer you consult with displays any of the following signs, you should look for someone else to represent you.
Lack of Expertise
One of the first things you should look for when hiring a criminal attorney is expertise in representing defendants charged with the crime you are dealing with. For example, if you are facing a theft charge, it may not be wise to hire a lawyer who only has experience with DUI cases. You probably won’t receive the type of defense you deserve.
If a criminal attorney promises you that he or she can get your charged dismissed, you might think that’s great news. After all, that’s what you’re hoping will happen. However, no matter how experienced or skilled a lawyer is, he or she can’t predict the future outcome of your case. Some lawyers will tell clients anything to convince them to pay them money. You don’t want to work with someone like that.
Talking You Into Pleading Guilty Early
If there is a lot of evidence stacked against you, accepting a plea deal might be a viable option. However, your criminal lawyer should never try to talk you into doing this if you don’t want to. Deciding whether to accept a plea deal or go to trial is completely up to you and your lawyer should respect that. If your lawyer keeps on insisting to accept a plea bargain, he or she might not want to fight hard for you.
It’s important to work with a criminal lawyer who keeps you up to date on developments in your case and communicate with your regularly via email and phone calls. If your lawyer rarely contacts you and is difficult to get a hold of, he or she might be too busy with other cases and can’t give your case the attention it deserves.
No matter how experienced and talented a criminal attorney is, things won’t work out if you don’t feel comfortable around him or her. You should be able to tell your lawyer anything about your case and ask him or her all the questions you want. If you just don’t feel at ease doing this, it may be time to find a different lawyer.
It’s important to do your research and trust your instinct before hiring a criminal attorney. If you ever feel like you retained the wrong attorney, do not hesitate to tell him or her that things aren’t working out and that you want to find a new attorney.