Why hire a criminal defense lawyer?

Why hire a criminal defense lawyer?

If you have been arrested or charged with committing a criminal offense, then you need the assistance of a criminal defense attorney. Unfortunately, many people in this situation hesitate at first for reasons like the following:

  • They don’t think they can afford professional representation
  • They think they can get the charges dropped by telling their side of the story

The reality is that legal counsel is more affordable than you might think, and well be worth it if you’re facing a serious criminal charge and your future is at stake. It’s also highly unlikely that you can talk yourself out of the charges: if you’ve been arrested, then chances are that the alleged evidence against you is of such a degree that a trial is a possibility.

Why you should engage an attorney ASAP

When you secure legal representation immediately after being arrested but before charges have been filed, a skilled defense attorney may be able to successfully challenge flimsy evidence and negotiate a dismissal. If you have already been charged, then your attorney will review the account of your arrest and determine if there is any room to bargain with the prosecution.

Benefits of hiring a criminal defense attorney

Your attorney is your spokesperson during the entire process, and a trained one at that. When you have been accused of a crime, it is only natural that you want to clear yourself by giving your version of the events that led to your arrest. Unfortunately, anything you say can be interpreted in ways you never intended and be used against you if the case proceeds to trial.

A seasoned defense attorney has the training and experience to understand which arguments and applications of the law can work in your favor, and use them to obtain the most positive result for your circumstances. They may also be able to present mitigating circumstances that reduce the severity of the potential outcome or even negate an allegation entirely.

Other benefits of hiring a criminal defense attorney include:

  • Gathering evidence. Your attorney can take statements from witnesses on your behalf. Depending on what crime you were charged with, these people might not be inclined to talk to you personally.
  • Securing you a plea bargain. Your attorney can work with the prosecutor to negotiate a plea bargain, which could eliminate many of the charges against you and reduce any potential sentence.
  • Explaining the consequences of potential actions. Many defendants plead guilty because they are assured of a shorter sentence, but they lack the insight to understand any broader consequences of such a move. Your attorney will explain the long-term issues that a guilty plea can create in your case.

If you are charged with a criminal offense in New York, then you are giving yourself the best possible chance for a positive outcome when you engage a criminal defense attorney to represent you. To do otherwise may put your freedom and your future at unnecessary risk.