First Time Needing a Criminal Defense Attorney? Here are Some Tips for Hiring the Best

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Many people never think of hiring an attorney until the moment they need an attorney. At such moments, many important questions arise, such as ‘what kind of attorney do I hire?’ and ‘How would I know if my attorney is a good one?’. The answer to these questions isn’t hard to find. The best kind of attorney to hire when you’re in trouble is one who specializes in the kind of trouble you’re in. For instance, if you’ve been accused of committing a white-collar crime, then you need to find yourself a white collar crimes defense attorney.

Before hiring a lawyer, you need to find out if they’re a specialist in their field, how long they’ve been practicing, and how much experience they have handling cases similar to yours. Here are other important tips for making sure you hire the best criminal defense attorney to defend you.

Ask Your Friends and Family for Recommendations

The quickest way to get a trusted attorney is to get recommendations from your family, friends, and associates. Ask if they have an attorney who can handle your case or make a recommendation. Even if they’ve never had to hire a criminal attorney, people usually have connections through social networking, and you can easily get these contacts by asking. 

It’s important to specify that you need a criminal attorney. Criminal, real estate, divorce, or tax are all examples of different specialties in law, so you need to make your demand clear. This means that your friend who knows a real estate lawyer might not be the best person to ask for a contact. Someone dealing with insurmountable debt, for instance, will need to hire a tax attorney, while someone who’s been accused of a hit-and-run incident will need a criminal defense attorney.

Additionally, consult with your family and friends about whether you do need a lawyer, and make sure to keep your expectations realistic. Don’t hire an attorney if you’re unsure about what you need, instead, you should pay to get expert legal advice from them.

Search Online resources

Several good online websites and tools can be used for attorney searches. Just running a simple Google search, provides you with several websites to choose from. It’s important to add your location and budget to get a more detailed search result.

For example, Legal Information Institute  is a great source that mentions countless law practices, near your location. They have attorneys sorted by state. The contact number, website, and location are all mentioned.

Some people also choose to ask for recommendations on online forums and communities. You can find Facebook groups and Reddit subreddits that deal with legal issues. They can answer your questions, provide valuable feedback and refer you to a reputable criminal lawyer to handle your case.

Linkedin is also a great tool. Just search for “[practice area you need] attorney”. This will not just show you the best attorneys there. Remember to narrow your search down to your city or state. Linkedin also shows the lawyer’s credentials, past experiences, references, qualifications, and reputation. Also, you can easily contact them via email, phone, or using the direct message feature.

Talk with other Lawyers

The best way to find the most suitable attorney for your case is to ask experts in the field. They are the ones who will most likely know someone for the job. Most lawyers work at a firm, attend parties with lawyers, and generally have a social network with other lawyers. Even if they don’t belong to the practice area that you want, they can still guide you toward the right person.

If you find an attorney, does a background check? Ask the referrer to provide you with their credentials, past work, character, and reputation.

Have More than One Attorney

It’s a good decision to have multiple (or at least more than one) attorneys because it’s sometimes risky pinning all your hopes on one attorney in a criminal case. If your attorney cannot work for any reason, then you are left stranded. Therefore, prepare for any inconveniences by asking your primary attorney to bring on one or more other attorneys to the case.

It’s best to allow your lead attorney to pick their assisting attorneys so that they pick lawyers with whom they can work well today. Hiring two or more different attorneys who do not see eye-to-eye or work well together will do more harm than good to your case.