Most people when charged with a crime don’t know immediately what to do. They spend too much time contemplating whether to represent themselves, hire an attorney, or get a public defender because they believe themselves to be
Representation is key. Even if you are an accomplished, competent, and intelligent person and know a little bit about the legal system, your interests are always best served by obtaining a lawyer as the intricate nuances of the criminal justice system make it nearly impossible for one to represent themselves. If your goal is to know and exercise your best available options, an experienced attorney can best advise you on what those are.
Early representation is key. You’ve been charged with a crime and you use up valuable time investigating whether you should represent yourself. During this time, defendants unknowingly miss early opportunities for dismissal or negotiation, or, even more damaging, make their situation worse by speaking to police and prosecutors directly without qualified representation.
Experienced representation is key. When your future is at stake, the time to hire your sister-in-law’s cousin who once got you out of a speeding ticket is not now. You are facing a criminal record and that is serious and permanent business. You need an experienced attorney who specializes in criminal defense and is familiar with important legal rules as well as local court customs and procedures; who knows how to negotiate deals and understands sentencing programs; and with whom prosecutors are generally more willing to cooperate.
With your future, and possibly your family’s future, at stake, an attorney is the most qualified person to help understand the charges against you, know what options or plea bargains are available to you, and what do do if you are unfortunately convicted.
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