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What qualifications should I look for in a Criminal Attorney?

When seeking a criminal attorney, it’s crucial to find someone who is highly qualified and experienced in handling criminal cases. Here are some qualifications and traits you should look for:

Experience

Look for an attorney with a significant amount of experience in handling criminal cases, preferably with a focus on the specific type of crime you are facing.

Drug charges, sex crimes, DUI and other specific accusations really need the steady hand of an experienced criminal lawyer. 

Experience brings knowledge of the legal system, familiarity with judges, prosecutors, and procedures, which can be beneficial for your case.

Reputation

Check the attorney’s reputation by looking for reviews, testimonials, and any disciplinary actions taken against them. Seek recommendations from trusted sources, such as friends, family, or other legal professionals.

Specialization

Criminal law is complex, and attorneys may specialize in various areas such as white-collar crime, drug offenses, DUI, assault, etc. Choose an attorney who specializes in the type of crime you are charged with, as they will have in-depth knowledge of relevant laws and defenses.

Track Record

Inquire about the attorney’s success rate in handling cases similar to yours. While past results don’t guarantee future outcomes, a strong track record can indicate competence and skill.

Free Consultation

Does the attorney offer a free consultation? A free consultation is essential in selecting a lawyer because you shouldn’t be paying to determine if the lawyer can handle your case, and if you and your attorney are compatible.

Credentials

Verify the attorney’s credentials, including their law degree and any additional certifications related to criminal law.

Communication Skills

A good criminal attorney should be an effective communicator both in and out of the courtroom. They should be able to explain legal concepts clearly and keep you informed about the progress of your case.

Resources

Determine if the attorney has the necessary resources to handle your case appropriately. This includes a competent support staff and access to expert witnesses, investigators, and other professionals who can assist with your defense.

Availability

Ensure the attorney has time to dedicate to your case and is not overloaded with too many clients. You want someone who can give your case the attention it deserves.

Strategy and Approach

During your initial consultation, discuss the attorney’s strategy and approach to handling your case. They should be able to explain potential legal defenses and how they plan to advocate on your behalf.

Fee Structure

Inquire about the attorney’s fee structure, including any retainer fees, hourly rates, or flat fees. Make sure you understand the costs involved and have a clear agreement in writing.

Compatibility

Finally, choose an attorney with whom you feel comfortable working. Trust and open communication between you and your lawyer are vital for a successful defense.

Remember, finding the right criminal attorney can significantly impact the outcome of your case, so take the time to research and choose wisely. If possible, schedule consultations with multiple attorneys to compare their qualifications and determine who is the best fit for your needs.

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Shimon Kohn, Colorado Springs Criminal Lawyer