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Why You Need An Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer

Matthew Gould Criminal Defense LawyerIf you have been arrested or charged with a crime, from possession of a controlled substance to domestic abuse, you could find yourself faced with incarceration, substantial fines, a probationary period, a criminal record, and more negative outcomes that could follow you for the rest of your life. However, if you are able to act quickly and hire a criminal defense lawyer, you could have many of your charges either lowered or dropped, depending on your circumstances.

Anticipating Your Exposure

Your experienced criminal defense lawyer will be able to anticipate any potential exposure in terms of both a formal sentence and informal consequences that may affect you in the long run. You’ll want to have a clear understanding of the situation and charges that you will be facing, as well as the potential range of penalties in order to make the best decisions regarding specific plea deals and whether or not to proceed to trial. You’ll also want to understand the impact of a disposition, including penalty enhancement for future cases, eligibility for record clearing, and employment related consequences. 

Understanding The Process

You’ll need to look for a criminal defense lawyer who has worked with cases like yours because they will have a better understanding of the legal matters relating to your case. A criminal defense lawyer who has worked in your area for a long time will also have a familiarity with local laws, prosecutors, and judges. It may be possible to intervene early in the legal process in some cases, which can impact the decision for the charges to be filed and the severity of those charges. The insider knowledge of your lawyer can help you to evaluate plea offers, diversion opportunities, and potential defense strategies with insight into what you should expect from the prosecutor and the judge. 

 

Mitigating The Impact To Your Family

Staying out of jail is going to be your first priority when you are accused of a crime. However, if jail time is likely or even inevitable, there are certain situations where you may want your family to be protected. Many professional criminal defense lawyers will help to mitigate the economic impact of your case on your family, including avoiding property and/or asset seizures. 

10 Tips To Locating The Best Criminal Lawyer

locating-the-best-criminal-lawyerWhen you’re faced with a criminal charge-like theft, DUI, crimes of violence, or drug offenses-you need an experienced lawyer who will stand in your corner and fight for your case. But being a lawyer is a top profession, and there are countless accredited criminal defense lawyers to choose from. It can be difficult to figure out which is the right lawyer for your case, particularly if you don’t know what to look for. What you need is someone you could trust with your life, but what you have is a list of names, possibly less. In order to find your perfect defense lawyer, we’ve compiled a list of the top ten things you should look for before settling with any given firm. 

A Lawyer With A Passion For Law

Don’t pick someone who sees your case as just another day on the job. You deserve a lawyer who loves what they do and is at home in the courtroom. Find an lawyer who shows interest in your story and is eager to fight on your behalf. 

All Experience Is Not Equal

A lawyer with years of experience working on tax law could be worse for a case than a criminal defense lawyer who has spent six months in the courtroom. Find a lawyer who specializes in your charges, and has plenty of experience defending those with similar charges. 

Trust Your Gut

You want someone who will act as an adviser, explaining your options and allowing you to make choices. If you’re working with a lawyer who makes you uncomfortable or pressures you into making decisions, you’re working with the wrong lawyer. 

It Takes A Village

It takes a village to raise a child, and it takes a strong legal team to prepare a case for court. Your lawyer will be relying on others as they work with your case. Ask to meet the administrative staff, paralegals, and other lawyers to be sure that the entire team is a good fit for your case. 

Confidence, Not Arrogance

Your lawyer can not guarantee a specific outcome to your case; there is always an aspect of the unknown when it comes to the law. Don’t pick a lawyer who builds you up with promises they can’t stand behind. Instead, find one who bolsters your case through skill and preparation. 

Check References

Even the greatest lawyers have a few dissatisfied clients, so you’ll want someone with enough good reviews to outweigh the bad. A great lawyer will have a reputation to match. 

A Comparable Fee

An experienced lawyer is likely going to cost more than one right out of law school. However, your chosen lawyer’s fee shouldn’t be much different that fees of similarly qualified candidates. If the fee is higher, be sure to ask why; it could be that your chosen lawyer comes with more services or cross experience than the competition. 

Reaching An Understanding

Your lawyer should speak clearly, in terms that you can understand, not courtroom legal jargon. 

Explaining Your Options

Decisions to your case shouldn’t be made at the drop of a hat. Every decision you make in regards to your case carries lasting consequences. Make sure that your lawyer informs you of all possible choices and makes sure that you understand the full extent of the one that you choose. 

Courtroom Experience

While court can be expensive and you’ll want to do everything you can to avoid your case going to a courtroom, sometimes it’s unavoidable. Make sure that your lawyer isn’t afraid of representing you in court. 

Facing criminal charges isn’t something that you should attempt on your own, like fighting a traffic ticket. Criminal charges call for a criminal lawyer who will stand by your side throughout the entirety of the case, fighting for your best interests. You’ll need someone with experience, passion for the law, and an inane ability to get results. Taking time to find the right lawyer for your case could have a big impact on the outcome of that case, and you shouldn’t trust your future to just anyone. 

What To Expect From Your Criminal Defense Attorney

 

How If you’ve been charged with a crime, you could be facing some serious penalties which include time behind bars. And you’ll need to have a skilled criminal defense lawyer behind your back who will fight for your rights and your freedom. When faced with prison time and extensive penalties for a criminal charge, you’re going to be wondering what your options are for a defender. You could qualify for a public defender, or you could opt to hire your own criminal defense lawyer, who will often be able to give you more options and personal attention to your case. Even if your criminal charges are minor and you don’t have a record, it’s almost always in your best interest to hire an experienced professional to defend you in your case.

No two cases are the same. In order to give yourself the best chance of removing or reducing your charges, you’ll need to hire a lawyer who is specialized in criminal defense, and one who has experience working with cases like yours. Your lawyer will be better able to spot specific arguments and factors that could mitigate or negate your potential crime.

How Can A Defense lawyer Help Me?

A professional criminal defense lawyer will call witnesses in your defense and cross examine those witnesses that the prosecution puts forward. However, there are a number of other important roles that your lawyer will play, both in and out of the courtroom.

If you are eligible for any plea bargains, your lawyer can help you to negotiate those and help you to decide if it is in your best interest to take the plea bargain. These plea deals can reduce your potential sentence or remove some of the charges against you, however, many prosecutors will not offer such bargains to those who choose to represent themselves. Your criminal defense lawyer will also figure out a good sentencing program for your specific situation. Even if you are found guilty, your lawyer can sometimes negotiate your sentence in order to prevent you from entering back into the criminal justice system. If you are found guilty of a drug related crime or dui, for instance, there are certain situations where your lawyer will be able to reduce your sentence. For instance, rather than spending 10 months in jail, your lawyer may suggest that you spend 6 months in jail with an additional four months in a drug treatment facility. This not only means a reduction of your time behind bars, but a rehabilitation for the problem that landed you in jail in the first place.

Because your lawyer is able to detach themselves personally from each case, they are better able to help their clients with the emotions that accompany their trial and sentencing. Defendants in criminal cases often are depressed, embarrassed, and fearful; conditions that are only exacerbated by poor or no legal defense. Your lawyer will also give you a reality check. One of the reasons that you shouldn’t represent yourself is that lawyers will know more about what is going on in a criminal trial than you will. Your lawyer will also have the advantage of remaining objective throughout the proceeding, allowing them to offer insights into how well the trial is actually going, and what is likely to happen in upcoming aspects of your case. These small reality checks are essential when you are deciding whether or not to take a plea bargain.

There are a ton of legal rules and regulations that you would likely never find. There are a number of rules and laws about criminal prosecutions that are buried within other regulations and laws. If you were to represent yourself, you’ll never know if a police search conducted in your home was lawful or not, without being able to understand the nuances and intricacies surrounding the fourth amendment. In addition, you may find it next to impossible to to navigate the state legal system on your own. In additional to local court rules, there are a number of unwritten rules that go with jurisdiction. This can become imperative if only certain prosecutors are able to make and approve plea bargains. Your criminal defense lawyer can save you time and money by talking to the right person the first time around.

There are also some hidden costs with pleading guilty. Many of the individuals who choose to represent themselves never stop to think about the consequences of pleading guilty, if it leads to a shorter amount of jail time. One of the most common hidden costs is that, if you plead guilty, you may have a hard time finding a job once your sentence has been completed. Another problem that individuals who represent themselves run into is that they find it impossible to gather evidence and statements from witnesses. Understandably, many witnesses will refuse to give statements or information to those who have been allegedly involved in a crime. These same witnesses are generally much more willing to talk with an experienced lawyer.

You Won’t Find The Answers In A Book

Many of those who choose to represent themselves take to reading books about crimes, punishments, and defenses, hoping that it will lead them to victory in their case. There is a world of difference between reading about the law and practicing the same law in court, as any experienced lawyer would be able to attest to. The key to succeeding in a courtroom is understanding the current and subtleties of a criminal trial. While you still may not be able to win your case, you’ll have a better chance with a professional lawyer by your side. For instance, the decision of what to charge a criminal with can mean the difference in how the case was handled. A crime may appear simple on paper, but it could be cast as either a multiple count indictment or a misdemeanor. Even if you are still adamant about representing yourself, you should still highly consider keeping a criminal defense lawyer on retainer in order to coach you through the legal minefields.

Free Case Reviews & Consultations

A great criminal defense lawyer is going to give you your best chance at winning your case, or at least obtaining a more favorable plea bargain. In fact, most criminal defense lawyers offer free consultations and case reviews so that you can see if they are a good fit for you and your case, and to get an idea of where you might stand in the legal system. No matter what type of representation you choose for your case, it is highly important that you begin seeking legal representation immediately. Waiting to hire a professional criminal defense lawyer could be the difference between your freedom and time spent behind bars. Call Matthew Gould to get legal representation today.

Reasons To Hire A Professional Criminal Lawyer For Your Case

 

Criminal handcuffed to bars in jailCertain aspects of the legal system, like criminal law, can be difficult to navigate for anyone who is unfamiliar with such processes. Most people, when charged with a criminal offense, are left reeling, unsure of who to turn to for the right legal assistance. If you or a loved one has found yourself in a position that requires the legal representation of a criminal defense lawyer, there a few things that you should know before deciding on the appropriate course, whether you choose to represent yourself or to hire a professional.

 

Criminal Law Can Be Difficult

 

Most lawyers will agree that legal matters like criminal defense are best handled by the professionals. Without the support of a professional and experienced defense lawyer, even a highly solid case can deteriorate fast. Criminal matters can be highly complex, including such elements as plea bargains, court filings, meeting deadlines, and proper legal documentation-all of which a skilled criminal defense lawyer will be able to handle. A single late filing could completely disrupt your case, comprise a legal procedure, and even encourage the court to rule against you. Not only should you avoid representing yourself in most cases, but you should also be selective in the lawyer you do choose to hire. You should look for a lawyer with a solid background in the criminal law field. You should avoid handling your case pro se, as you are emotionally involved. On the other hand, an experienced lawyer can help drive your case towards a positive outcome without allowing personal matters to intervene. This is even more important for highly personal cases, like those of domestic violence or child abuse.

 

Cutting Corners Could Cost You

 

The result of your criminal case could very well determine your future. Your specific case outcome could mean jail time and fines. And the diligence of your lawyer may mean the difference between accepting a plea bargain for a lesser charge and reducing your sentence, to spending time behind bars. You could end up with more money in your pocket and fewer consequences in the long run. 

 

Suppressing Bad Evidence

 

In criminal cases, the end result will often be determined by the admission of evidence. An evidentiary hearing may not dictate the ruling of your case, but it could have a large impact on the outcome. If there was a key piece of evidence that was obtained illegally, it could be omitted from the trial completely. On the other hand, if evidence has been stored or protected inadequately in accordance with the law, it could be found to be compromised and insufficient for court review. In the end, a strong defense lawyer will be able to make sure that your case is protected and that all of the evidence against you is validated or removed, and in line with your constitutional rights. 

 

The Best Outcome

 

You might find that the best course of action for your case is a plea bargain. Or you may be better off taking your case to trial if the evidence is minimal for the prosecution. While you may not know which course of action is best for your particular case, an experienced lawyer will be able to guide you through the options that are right for you in order to help you achieve a positive outcome for your case.
If you’ve been confronted with criminal charges, you should consider looking for legal assistance. You have options, and your experienced lawyer will be able to help you to decide the best options for your particular legal case. 

Is Justice Blind?

Is-Justice-BlindMany of us are familiar with the saying “Justice is blind.” Lady Justice is commonly depicted as wearing a blindfold to illustrate that the law does not favor one party over another. Whether people are victims, suspects, defendants, rich, or poor, they are said to be equal in the eyes of the law. However, the story of David Rosenbaum, a 63-year-old, retired, award-winning journalist for the New York Times who died from the head injury he suffered after getting mugged, suggests otherwise.

Before the firefighters, EMTs, nurses, and doctors who treated him knew that Rosenbaum was a famous journalist, he was just another John Doe to them. As such, they neglected various duties and went through the motions after assuming his condition was due to intoxication rather than a head injury. The firefighters said they smelled booze on him, and relayed that information to the police who told the EMTs. Thus, he was simply another “drunk” whose diminished motor skills were due to intoxication.

When Rosenbaum arrived at the hospital, it was assumed that he needed to sleep it off, which was why none of the required intake assessments were performed. By the time the doctors realized Rosenbaum’s symptoms were due to a neurological injury, and not to intoxication, as everyone had assumed, eight hours had passed since the EMTs evaluated him. Unfortunately, a blood clot caused Rosenbaum’s brain to swell, and he died the following day. Once people realized that the victim was a well-known journalist, rather than a nameless drunk, newspaper stories and investigations into Rosenbaum’s death were launched.

This example demonstrates that we are not as objective as we would like to think when assessing victims after crimes have been committed. No matter how many times we have been told not to judge a book by its cover, we do exactly that by quickly jumping to conclusions after receiving very little evidence. This causes us to become overconfident in our conclusions, despite the lack of evidence we base those conclusions upon.

The most significant factor that caused everyone to immediately brandish Rosenbaum as just another drunk may have been the vomit on his jacket. The disgust people felt about his personal appearance may have caused them to keep their distance from Rosenbaum and make moral judgments about him. Those judgments likely resulted in his being labeled a drunk and thus unworthy of the same treatment a victim who was an upstanding member of society would have been afforded.

What happened to Rosenbaum could happen to you or I. The labels we receive as victims follow us throughout all of our dealings with the criminal justice system. To make matters worse, those labels are hard to remove once people get branded with them. Therefore, we shouldn’t be so quick to jump to conclusions about others, even though they are jumping to conclusions about us.