Whether you’ve been charged with fraud, a drug crime, a violent crime, or something else, you’re likely aware that you require legal help. After all, the criminal justice system can be complicated and typically requires the most experienced legal experts to navigate it.
While there are many highly regarded lawyers throughout the United States, not all will be right for your needs. Potentially improve your chances of hiring the right one by asking them some of the following questions:
What Qualifications Do You Have?
A well-qualified lawyer is potentially going to be more suitable to represent you in court than someone with very few qualifications. At a minimum, ask whether they have a juris doctorate online degree or similar, what school they went to, and their years of experience. Most reputable lawyers will have no problems sharing this information with you so that you can be confident in your decision for them to represent you during one of the most challenging times of your life.
How Much Do Your Services Cost?
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to legal fees. Some personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means they don’t charge their clients unless they help them achieve a successful outcome. However, defense attorneys typically operate on an hourly basis, with that hourly rate based on their experience levels, your case, and your location. Most attorney fees range from $100 to more than $500 per hour.
While hiring the most affordable lawyer you find can be tempting, be sure to check their credentials and success rate. As a general rule, the more experienced a lawyer is, the more their hourly rate can often be. It can also be a good idea to find out how they expect payment. Some lawyers send one bill at the end of their services, while some charge regularly and expect payment throughout legal proceedings.
Have You Worked On Cases Like Mine?
Whether you’ve been charged with a drug-related crime or something more serious like murder, it’s a good idea to ask your preferred lawyer whether they’ve worked on cases like yours recently and in the past.
When they have experience with crimes like yours, they can use their expertise to potentially reduce your charges or even have them dropped altogether. They can also use the same resources they used with past successful cases, such as expert witnesses.
Will I Be Successful?
Asking whether you’ll be successful in having your charges dropped or lessened is a good question to ask a lawyer before choosing to hire them. They might have all the facts of your case, but they can never guarantee an outcome when so many people are involved in making decisions for your future.
If a lawyer does say that they can reduce your charges or have them dropped, consider choosing a different lawyer. There’s nothing wrong with being confident, but no highly-regarded lawyer will make promises they can’t keep, especially in serious criminal cases.
You can hire a lawyer based on what you read about them online, but that doesn’t mean you’ll have all the facts. Make your decision confidently by asking them these important questions above.