A criminal defense attorney is who defends a person allegedly responsible for the crime committed. Criminal law is a different genre and not all lawyers are capable of representing a defendant. The criminal attorneys have specialization in criminal law.
Unfortunately, most people have no idea about whom they should approach for criminal defense and often end up knocking on the door of the civil attorneys. This write-up is meant to enlighten you about different aspects of criminal law and hiring a criminal defense lawyer.
Civil vs Criminal Lawyers
Private criminal defense attorneys usually practice in small partnerships or independently and in a particular geographic setting. On the contrary, civil lawyers work for large corporate law firms having branches in many cities. Personality differences between the two types contribute to the variation to some extent. However, the biggest difference can be attributed to the nature of their working procedure as follows:
- Large-firm civil lawyers usually represent national or multinational companies. Criminal defense lawyers defend individuals whose problems are usually local.
- Companies that seek advice from the big-firm civil attorneys continuously require legal guidance and representation. Individual criminal attorneys are usually one-shot players offering only sporadic or nonrecurring service.
Any typical private defense lawyer, who has entered into the realm of private practice, usually possesses a wealth of experience after having worked for the government for years.
A defendant should hire a lawyer having years of experience in the courthouse where the defendant has his or her case pending. Even if the same law is enacted through a state, the procedure varies between courthouses.
The experienced defense lawyers are most likely to know which prosecutors may plead right before court trial, against those in favor of advanced negotiations. Local lawyers have full knowledge about investigating police officers and how they are likely to perform in the courtroom before juries.
Criminal defendants should hire lawyers having experience with local personnel and procedures.
Experience with Crime Type
A defendant should try to find out a lawyer having experience in representing defendants charged with a similar offense. Modern criminal laws are extremely complex and that is why many an Orlando criminal defense attorney has specialization in a particular genre of a criminal offense.
A defendant should inquire about the lawyer’s specialization and experience during primary consultation. A criminal defense lawyer should not hire an attorney who refuses to discuss his or her experience and/or gives vague answers.
Even if the lawyer is highly reputed and recommended, it is important for the defendant to feel comfortable with the professional. In the best lawyer-client relationships, the clients are integral to the decision-making process and defendants should hire attorneys who consider their clients as partners and not as case files.
The defendant should ask themselves the following questions to decide if to hire a particular attorney:
- Is the lawyer someone I can openly talk to and feel comfortable working with?
- Does the lawyer explain everything in an easy-to-understand way?
- Does the attorney show personal concern and want to help?
- Does the attorney seem to be a professional who will engender trust in judges and prosecutors?