When a person needs to hire a criminal attorney, they usually need to find one promptly. However, prior to hiring one, certain questions need to be asked.
Meeting with an Oakland County Criminal Defense Attorney
When a person first meets with an attorney, they typically take the following items along to the meeting:
• Any documents received from the court that show the charges and next appearance date
• The bail papers
• If the person’s property was searched, they take any papers the police gave them
• A copy of the police report, if available
Defense attorneys also find it helpful if clients provide a list of witnesses, other defendants and victims.
Many clients also take along a list of questions to ask their oakland county criminal defense attorney.
1. The Attorney’s Experience and Background
When a client first meets with the attorney, they usually find out if he or she has prior experience defending against similar charges. Questions asked include:
• Where did the attorney attend law school and when did he or she graduate?
• How long have they been practicing criminal law?
• How often do they appear in court?
• Do they regularly negotiate plea agreements?
• How often do their clients go to trial?
• How familiar are they with the charges against the client?
2. Assessment of the Case
Whether a person is charged with a crime in a state, federal or county court, they will want their defense attorney to offer a good idea of what lies ahead. Questions asked include:
• What are the client’s legal options? Should they plead guilty, make a plea agreement or go to trial?
• What aspects of the case will work in the client’s favor?
• What potential problems could arise?
• What can the client expect at different stages of the process, including motions, disposition and trail?
3. Case Management
This is the term attorneys use to describe how the logistics of a case are handled. It is important to understand what goes on behind the scenes in a case to avoid misunderstandings. Typical questions include:
• Is the attorney available to represent the client?
• Will anyone else be working on the case? Is the client able to meet them?
• Will the attorney be personally representing the client in court, or will the responsibility lie with someone else?
• If the client has questions, who should they contact?
• How does the attorney prefer to be contacts and how quickly do they usually respond?
4. Hiring a Criminal Attorney
After a client meets with a criminal attorney or two, they will have to select one. If they only met with one and are happy with the way the attorney operates, that makes the decision easier.
If the client is struggling to decide, they could ask themselves:
• Which attorney has the experience they need with the charges they are facing?
• Which attorney offered the advice the client found most helpful?
The answers to such questions will lead the client facing criminal charges to the best defense attorney to represent their case.