When you need to hire a defence lawyer, you really need one. This is not like looking for someone to mow your lawn.
This person is literally about to hold your future in their hands. So you need to ensure they’re smart, hardworking and experienced.
That said, you also need to make sure there’s a good fit, chemistry-wise, if you’re going to have a good working relationship.
Here is what you need to know about a lawyer before you sign your future over to them.
You’re going to need to be completely comfortable in how this attorney defends you. You may want a bulldog-type, who’s aggressive and has a real kick-butt style in the courtroom. A fighter, who you’re glad is on your side.
Or, you may want someone with a calmer demeanor, who gives off a feeling of intellect. You may feel more comfortable with this style, as the lawyer calmly makes the intellectual case for your innocence.
There’s no wrong answer here. You’re allowed to be picky when you hire a defence lawyer. You’re allowed to hire or pass on someone if you just don’t feel comfortable with their style.
Nobody likes surprise fees. You need to have a frank conversation about their fees and their payment structure before you sign on to work with them.
This can take place before you even meet them in person. For example, a law firm like Criminal Solicitor Sydney will let you get a quote over the phone before meeting.
You don’t need to pass on an attorney because they cost too much. It’s hard to limit your spending with your future on the line. But you should definitely know what you’re getting into. Again, no surprises.
One of the biggest factors you need to consider when you hire a defence lawyer is how much confidence you have in their abilities. And one thing that can really put your mind at ease is knowing that they have a history of winning cases.
They also need a proven history of winning cases just like yours. They should be able to go into specifics about how many cases they have won and lost. How many of those cases were settled and how many went to trial? And why?
Don’t be afraid to ask for references from their previous clients. It would be very helpful for you to call the people they have represented in the past, and hear glowing reviews from real people.
Their Online Footprint
Of course, you will want to do some research off of their site as well. Take a look at online reviews as well, on sites like Google, Facebook, or Yelp. 83% of lawyer-seekers said they read online reviews in making their decision.
Don’t let one or two bad reviews turn you off of a potential lawyer. Whether you’re trying to find a dentist or trying to hire a defence lawyer, you’re bound to read some bad reviews from “haters.” And that’s fine.
But if all of the online reviews say the same thing (maybe about a lack of personal service, or surprise fees), this could be a sign you don’t want to work with them.
Ask them where they specialize. This, again, requires a specific answer. Be very wary if they’re vague or unspecific.
Also beware of lawyers who claim to be good at everything. Being good at everything usually means you’re not great at any single thing.
So, if they claim to be experts in drunk driving charges, they should have fought a number of these cases and won.
This is another area where you don’t have time for vanity or empty promises.
Ask them how they plan to defend you, and expect a complete answer. Again, be wary if they don’t dive into the specifics.
You may assume they’re being secretive because they don’t want you to take their plan and bring it to someone else (or even try it yourself), but that’s no excuse. Your future is way more important than their secret plan.
This is their first real opportunity to build your confidence in them. You deserve the peace-of-mind in feeling that your lawyer has you covered with a rock-solid strategy that has worked in the past.
This is another area where you don’t want to see any surprises. Will they be handling your case personally, or will this person be handing you off to someone else on staff?
If someone else will handle you, why? Is it because this new party has a unique specialty, and can better serve your needs? Or is this attorney just too busy to handle your case personally?
If you have any questions along the way, who should you contact? Who will be the main point of contact once they trial starts?
Also, do they have any specialists they can bring on to help your case? Maybe your defence would benefit from the advice of a retired police officer, or even a private investigator.
This should come up when they’re going over your plan. If they have access to these specialists, knowing this can really help you feel better about your case.
And of course, you need to know if their added expertise is going to be an added cost.
We Can Help You Do More Than Hire a Defence Lawyer
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