Do I Need Representation by A Lawyer?

If you have been arrested on criminal charges the U.S. Constitution affords everyone certain rights. One of these is the right to be represented in court by a lawyer. Those who are charged with minor crimes may elect to represent themselves and even some people charged with felonies have chosen self-representation. The statistics show, however, that regardless of the offense, those represented by a lawyer tend to have more favorable outcomes than those without. Those who are unable to afford an attorney can have one appointed by the court. Many people who are able to pay for an attorney wonder whether they should retain one to represent them. In most cases, the answer is yes.

Complex Legal System

Our legal system does have some complexities to it. The laws are always being revised and refined. Those without a legal background and with no experience won’t know these laws. In many cases an experienced attorney knows how to handle charges like yours and understands the intricacies of the law in regards to your situation. Every case is different and has a unique set of circumstances. A knowledgeable attorney knows how to best defend you against the charges. Your lawyer is always on your side and will assist in your defense to get you the best outcome possible. Your rights must always be protected throughout the process and your attorney is the best one to take on this task. An aggressive strategy is often necessary in defending against some charges.

Why Not Represent Myself?

Sometimes the charges are minor. If the charges and potential consequences are insignificant there may be little harm in self-representation. However, when you are charged with a serious crime or when the penalties are strong, it is usually best to seek professional help from a lawyer with experience in the necessary type of law. When should you seek professional representation from an attorney may include:

  • If the case is going to trial
  • If you have a prior criminal background
  • If found guilty the potential penalties include prison
  • If you are in custody and unable to access adequate information to defend yourself
  • If you are fearful of the criminal process and unsure of how to proceed

Hiring an Attorney

If you have been arrested or accused of a crime you’ll want to consider hiring an attorney. When choosing representation it’s best to pick a lawyer who focuses on cases similar to yours. For example, you’ll want to choose a lawyer with a specialty in DUI cases if you’ve been charged with DUI. It is always best to get your lawyer involved as soon as possible after the arrest. This will help your case because the attorney will be better able to access information, gather data, and learn details that could help in providing a successful defense. Your lawyer will discuss the case with you and answer any questions you may have. The attorney will be able to sort through the legal system to guide you through the process for the best outcome possible.