Finding the right criminal defense attorney can mean the difference between being found innocent of the charges brought against you and spending years in jail and paying thousands of dollars in fines.
Just like with other important decisions, there is a clear process you should follow when attempting to find the right criminal defense attorney for you.
- Determine if you need and can afford a criminal defense attorney. For many minor infractions, you may not need the full spectrum of services a criminal defense attorney can provide. But at the very least, you should seek a consultation to determine if that is the case. Also, you’ll need to consider if you can afford to hire a criminal defense attorney early in your case, or whether you’ll need to rely on a public defender to represent you.
- Decide what kind of criminal defense attorney you will need. This is pretty simple but very important. If you’ve been charged with a crime that violates a state law, hire an attorney that specializes in state law. If you’ve broken a federal law, hire an attorney that specializes in federal law.
- Narrow your focus to attorneys that specialize in defending the type of crime you are charged with. Use online directories, referrals, professional organizations and your State Bar website to find possible attorneys to represent you.
- Talk to several attorneys to find one who has the qualities that are important to you and that you feel most comfortable with. Good communication, promptness in replies, and experience in a particular jurisdiction are just some of the things for you to consider.
- Make sure the attorney will be actively involved in your case. It’s not uncommon to hand off some of the work related to a case, but when the game is on the line, you want the actual attorney representing you to a judge and jury.
Dwane Cates Law Group proudly serves the cities of Phoenix, Scottsdale, Glendale, Tempe, Mesa and surrounding Arizona communities.