7 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Criminal Defense Lawyer

7 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Criminal Defense Lawyer

If you’re facing criminal charges, it can be tough for you to find a criminal lawyer, especially if your case is a complicated one. You need a lawyer who’ll help make a difference in your case proceedings and bring out the best outcome. You need a lawyer who has your best interest at heart and someone who’s dedicated to ensuring you get nothing but the best.

Vet your lawyers with very careful considerations, so you only come up with the best. Here are seven important questions to ask before hiring a criminal defense lawyer in Jacksonville.

  1. What Is Your Experience in Criminal Law?

Knowing how long your lawyer has been working as a criminal attorney allows you to understand their experience. A suitable attorney has good experience and tremendous success in representing their clients. This kind of attorney knows what to expect throughout the stages of your case and can give you the right advice.

An experienced lawyer can develop a good course of action when things don’t seem to go as planned and have strategies to make things work in your favor. They know how to build a strong defense and navigate your case.

  1. Is the Lawyer’s Practice Specific to Criminal Law?

A lawyer doesn’t need to focus on a specific field. They can take on any case as long as they have the license to practice as an attorney in a specific state. Many lawyers work in “General Practice” and can take on any case even if they come across it for the first time.

If you want the best outcome for your case, you’ll stay away from lawyers who don’t have a specific area of practice. You don’t need a jack of all trades to handle your criminal defense cases.

Consider choosing a criminal defense attorney who only focuses on criminal law. Go through your ideal lawyer’s website and see what their areas of focus are. If they focus on divorce, personal injury, and property law then that will be enough to tell you that they’re jacks of all trade.

  1. Will You Handle My Case Yourself?

If you’re going to hire from a law firm, this is a very important question to ask because any lawyer in the firm can handle your case. You don’t need an intern, paralegals, or inexperienced attorney to work on your case. You also don’t want to be in a situation where you talk about the details of your case with one lawyer today and another tomorrow.

Having too many criminal lawyers working on your case increases the margin of error. The attorney you talk to from the start should be the one handling every detail of your case and representing you in court. You need someone who’s dedicated to ensuring you get the best outcome like Toronto Criminal Lawyer.

  1. What Are Their Availability and Communication Method?

Maintaining constant communication with your attorney is mandatory. You need to work with an attorney who’ll be available whenever an issue arises with your case. Of course, you don’t expect them to be with you full time because they have other cases to handle, but at least be a phone call away.

You should be able to get hold of your attorney any time and handle any issue before things get out of hand. Even though phone calls will work conveniently, you also need an attorney who can attend physical meetings. Face-to-face communications will help the two of you discuss your case in detail and build an attorney-client relationship.

  1. What Do Your Past Clients Say About You?

A good lawyer will not be afraid to show you testimonials from their past clients. If they do good work, their clients probably have only good things to say about their experience working with them. Your attorney should give you one or two contacts of their past clients.

Other attorneys have written testimonials from their clients that you can go through. Others have testimonials from their fellow attorneys. You should also check their website to see if you can see their client reviews.

Watch out for those attorneys with negative testimonials or too many bad reviews. If your attorney has no testimonials or is unwilling to share them with you, that should also be a red flag.

  1. How Much Will I Pay for the Criminal Defense Lawyer?

It’s important to know the charges of your lawyer beforehand so you can prepare yourself. You need to know if you can afford to hire that specific lawyer or you should continue looking for a cheaper one. The attorney should give you a breakdown of the cost of everything, including their fees, investigation costs, witness costs, among others.

Take the opportunity to understand how they structure their fees.

Do they take hourly payments or flat fees? Ask them if they need a retainer for hourly fees. If they take flat fees, ask what the fee covers and whether you need to make a full payment or can make partial.

  1. What Is My Participation in the Case?

After finding out what the attorney can do for you, you also need to find out your participation. Your attorney should brief you on what to do before, during, and after the hearing. This also includes your availability and how you should conduct yourself.

An attorney may also require you to present them with some essential documents that will help in the case. It’s also your obligation to be transparent enough and disclose all the information your lawyer needs to represent you fully. Make sure you hire an attorney who you feel comfortable telling even your most intimate information.

Now You’re Ready to Hire Your Defense Attorney

Hiring a criminal defense lawyer is not just something you wake up one day and decide. You need to carry out your research, interview a few attorneys, and choose only when you’re 100% convinced. The above are a few of the questions to ask a lawyer before hiring.

Do you need more help on legal matters? Look at other articles on this site to equip yourself with other important tips.

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