Criminal defendants who do not wish to rely on professional legal assistance provided by an experienced attorney can decide to represent themselves in court. Their choice could be influenced by multiple factors, including a precarious financial situation or (often misguided) personal beliefs.
Why Do Certain Defendants Go In Favor of Self-Representation?
Some defendants may be inclined to think that the crime they are charged with is not serious enough to account for the costs linked to professional legal representation. In some cases, defendants may decide to plead guilty and accept the sentence that may vary in their case, erroneously thinking that hiring an attorney won’t have an impact on the outcome of their case. Moreover, defendants who choose to represent themselves in court do not have to comply with the rules and regulations of an ethical code respected by all lawyers. As a result, they can cause chaos and put more pressure on a system that is already overloaded by delaying proceedings and filing motion after motion. Nonetheless, this approach is usually counterproductive and can easily backfire. Last but not least, certain defendants agree to take changes and expose themselves to the inherent risks of self-representation to gain access to certain small privileges, such as access to the jail’s library.
Reasons Why Hiring a Seasoned Oakland County Criminal Defense Attorney Is the Best Option for Any Defendant
While self-representation may be a feasible option for defendants facing trial for minor crimes, such as shoplifting, those who are charged with felonies and face serious consequences shouldn’t neglect the benefits of hiring a seasoned Oakland county criminal defense attorney. A good lawyer with extensive courtroom experience, specialized in cases similar to the ones that the defendant is involved in could handle all the proceedings in an ideal manner, prevent delays and errors, and bring his or her client a few steps closer to a favorable outcome (a lesser sentence or a not guilty verdict).
As LegalMatch.com points out, defendants who choose to represent themselves in court usually lower their odds of success simply because they are not properly trained to defend their best interests in court. They are unfamiliar with the legal framework that a lawyer would rely on to prove their innocence; not to mention that they don’t know the protocol that they must follow to support their cause, like entering evidence or making objections.
Lack of knowledge on these matters can stop them from winning a case. Moreover, poor communication and persuasion, influencing and negotiating skills are other important limitations that could make it difficult for any defendant to win his or her own battle in court. Last but not least, the problem of bias is one other drawback of self-representation. Defendants may have a hard time building a compelling case as long as they cannot present facts in an objective manner and support fair arguments in front of the jury. All these reasons underline the importance of quality legal representation and give defendants a few more reasons to hire the best Oakland County lawyers that they can afford.