Clients regularly have no clue what to ask when they were calling around to find a lawyer for their case. If you have never had any experience with the criminal system, knowing which lawyer to hire can be very complicated. Asking a few questions can really help you separate out which lawyer would be right for your situation.
First, you need to find out whether the lawyer actually handles criminal law. Many lawyers will handle a few criminal cases here and there, but do not focus their practice on criminal defense. You should ask: How many criminal cases have you handled within the last 6 months?
Next, you need to ask whether they handle your specific area of criminal law. There are lawyers who only practice criminal law, but the majority of their work is on misdemeanors. Similarly, some lawyers may focus their practice on theft crimes, so you may not want them handling your driving under the influence case. You should ask: How many similar cases have you handled and what were the results?
Another important question is how well the lawyer knows the Judge and prosecutor handling your case. Knowing the law is important, but knowing the personality and preferences of the judge and prosecutor can result in a faster and more favorable outcome. You should ask: What are the prosecutor and Judges name and what are they like? Have you handled similar cases with that prosecutor or judge and what were the outcomes?
Money should always be on your mind, especially when you are searching for a lawyer. There are generally two payment options, hourly rate or a flat fee. The benefit of an hourly rate is that you only pay for the work that is done. You need to ask: What is you hourly rate, how many hours do you expect it will take, and what about work done by the staff? A flat fee on the other hand can be nice, so that you know the full cost up front. If there ends up being extra work needed, you will not end up having to pay for the extra work. You should ask: What is your flat fee, what services are included in the fee, and is the fee is non-refundable?
In addition to these questions, you need to find someone you are comfortable with. You want someone that you can trust and feel comfortable asking questions. Once you find someone you are comfortable with, these are just a few questions that can help you zero in on and make sure they are the best criminal defense lawyer for you. Make sure to work with an experienced lawyer such as the Criminal Defense attorneys Lexington KY locals turn to.
Thanks to authors at Eric L. Ray, Attorney at Law, PLLC for insight into Criminal Defense Law.