While civil matters and even some family court issues can be resolved without the need for an attorney, there’s a really good chance that you’re going to need, and want, one by your side when it comes to criminal matters. Criminal matters can lead to hefty fines and even extensive jail time and you should definitely consider hiring a criminal defense attorney if you find yourself in any of the situations discussed today.
1. You’ve Been Charged
Anytime you are charged with a criminal act, it is essential that you hire an experienced defense attorney. They will ensure that your rights are protected, that you don’t say anything that could hurt your case, and that all legal procedures are adhered to. Click here to learn more about criminal lawyers.
2. Police Want to Question You
Being questioned by police can be filled with virtual landmines and a criminal defense attorney will be able to help you structure your responses in a manner that ensures that your rights are protected. Whenever you’re asked to speak with authorities, it is your constitutional right to have an attorney present and this helps prevent you from accidentally saying something that results in the police considering you as a suspect in the case.
3. They Want You in a Lineup
If the police want to conduct a lineup or show your photo to witnesses or an alleged victim, a criminal defense attorney will ensure that authorities follow established law and protect your rights while doing so.
4. You’re Considering Defending Yourself
There’s an old saying attributed to the great Abraham Lincoln that goes, “He who represents himself has a fool for a client” and if you’re considering going to trials, you should always consult a defense attorney. They’ll help you understand the possible consequences of going to trial, such as the possible sentence and repercussions of a guilty finding, and all your options along with providing expert advice on whether you should accept a plea deal or go to trial.
5. You’ve Been Offered a Plea Deal
In order to avoid going to trial, the prosecutor may offer a plea deal. While this is usually later in the process, there are times that they may offer one before you’ve even considered hiring a criminal lawyer. If this happens, you definitely want to work with an experienced criminal attorney so that they analyze the plea offer to determine if accepting is indeed in your best interest. Furthermore, there’s always a chance that they may be able to negotiate a better deal for you with the prosecutor.
Find the Best Lawyer for Your Case
You may think that one Philadelphia criminal lawyer is just as good as another, but you seriously couldn’t be more wrong. While there are indeed plenty of criminal lawyers in Philadelphia, you should take the time to do a little research before contracting one.
When you find a lawyer that specializes in criminal law, check their social media, Google+, and Facebook accounts to read through client reviews. Check the Bar Association for your area and talk to friends and family regarding attorneys that they’ve dealt with. Your reputation, employment opportunities, family life, criminal record and, quite possibly, your freedom are on the line. Don’t leave anything to chance.