This is the third post in my series on whether hiring a criminal defense attorney is “worth it” for Phoenix residents. My last article discussed how a criminal conviction can harm your career. It is important to understand that even a minor charge can have lasting repercussions on one’s life. In this article I will focus on another important topic – the fact that retaining private counsel allows you to select a representative that you are “comfortable” with.
Those charged with a crime in Phoenix will typically have one of two options. They can retain private counsel or utilize the public defender. When deciding whether to retain a private lawyer one of the factors to consider is cost. Another factor to consider, however, is whether you feel the attorney who represents you understands your needs, your situation, and has a personality type which meshes with yours. If you and your attorney are not able to have a good working relationship then it will be problematic for your defense. If, for example, you and counsel have dissimilar communication styles then it may not be clear why your lawyer is taking certain actions. You may become frustrated out of a belief that your representative should be pursuing another strategy and you may have a hard time cooperating as a result. This, unfortunately, can result in important steps being missed during your case.
When asking “how to choose a criminal lawyer” there are multiple points I would suggest that you consider. First, ask the attorney about their procedures for staying in contact with clients. One of the most common complaints against an attorney regards the lack of communication. Much of this frustration can be avoided if you select someone who has a policy of promptly responding to phone calls, emails, and giving out a cell phone number. Second, you should ensure that your attorney uses the initial consultation to help you understand the process you are facing, what it is you can expect while the case moves forward, and what will be required of you. Knowing what to expect will make events less frustrating as they unfold. Finally, counsel should lay out a clear path of steps they will be taking immediately.
I founded my own firm, in part, due to my understanding that the legal profession can do a much better job of servicing the community. This is one reason why I strive to provide the highest level of service. I return phone calls within one business day, if not the same day, and ensure that I am available to answer your questions. If you have been arrested then contact my Phoenix office today. We also represent defendants in other Maricopa County cities such as Mesa, Glendale, Scottsdale, Chandler, and Gilbert. We also assist Pima County residents in Tucson.