If you have been charged with a criminal offense, you require the legal services of a criminal defense attorney. In order to find the right lawyer for your case, it is wise to interview a few potential candidates before settling on one. Make sure you bring several items that will help the prospective attorney evaluate your case, including any court documents, any paperwork provided by law enforcement, and your bail papers.
Question: How Long Have You Been Practicing Criminal Law?
Like in any profession, experience matters. Several studies show that it takes approximately a decade to become an expert in any chosen field. So when hiring a lawyer, you should look for one that has spent at least 10 years practicing criminal law. Furthermore, those who used to be prosecutors or public defenders have spent valuable time in the courtroom on a daily basis before opening a private practice, which is a huge advantage.
Q: How Many Jury Trials Have You Been Involved In?
You want an attorney who is familiar and comfortable with the trial process and not afraid to take your case to trial. Lawyers who find ways to settle without going to trial—even if that way is in the client’s best interest—are not confident in their courtroom skills. It is best to look for a lawyer who has handled at least 40 jury trials.
Q: Are You a Local Attorney?
A local lawyer has the advantage of being familiar with the local police department, prosecutors, judges, and practices of the courts which can have a positive impact in your case. It is critical to find out how familiar the prospective attorney is with the county where your case is pending.
Q: What Are the Potential Results of My Case?
Remember, no lawyer can honestly guarantee a specific outcome. However, one who informs you of all possible results, including negative outcomes, has your best interests in mind. An attorney who makes exaggerated promises about the future is more concerned about getting your business rather than providing you with the best representation necessary to protect your rights and freedom.
Q: Will You Actually Handle My Case?
While you may initially speak with an experienced attorney at a firm, he or she may assign your case to a less experienced lawyer. If you are hiring someone based on their experience and reputation, you need to ensure that attorney will be the one actually representing you.
Q: How Much Will You Charge?
People typically want to pay as little as possible when hiring someone or a business for their services. But when you are charged with a crime, you want to hire the best attorney for your case. A low fee often means a less experienced lawyer. It could mean he or she handle a high volume of cases. On the other hand, the highest fee doesn’t mean the best service. Obtain a quote from all of your attorneys and determine the best price range.
At Foley Griffin, LLP, our Nassau County criminal defense attorneys have been helping our community for more than 20 years. Since all of our lawyers are former prosecutors, we possess the extensive knowledge of both sides of the courtroom and have established lasting relationships with local judges, prosecutors, and law enforcement. We can investigate your case, evaluate all of the related circumstances and evidence, and develop a strong defense strategy for you.
For more information, contact us and request a free consultation today.