Three Questions to Ask a Criminal Defense Attorney
If you’ve been charged with a crime in Largo, Florida, or the surrounding area, you’ll want to start researching criminal defense attorneys as soon as possible. The criminal justice system can often move very quickly, and you’ll want your attorney to have sufficient time to start learning the facts of your case before the next set of proceedings. And, once you’ve narrowed down your options to a few potential candidates, you may want to schedule consultations with them to determine if they’re the right choice to represent you. Here are a few questions to pose to a criminal defense attorney during your first meeting:
1. What Area of Criminal Law Do You Focus On?
Many criminal defense attorneys specialize in one particular area, so you’ll want to ask whether the attorney focuses on a certain type of crime. You can also ask how familiar they are with the charges you’re facing. Even if an attorney has been practicing for years, they may not be the best choice for your defense if they don’t have much experience handling cases like yours. If you’re facing DUI charges, for example, you probably won’t want to hire a criminal defense attorney who specializes in theft but hasn’t handled many DUI cases.
2. How Would You Handle My Case?
You’ll want to spend a good portion of your consultation discussing potential case strategy. Although there’s never any guarantee about how a case will play out, an experienced criminal defense attorney will be able to look at the facts of your case and let you know which ones help you (and which ones could potentially pose a problem for you). You’ll also want to ask how often the attorney takes cases to trial. If you’re hesitant to enter a plea, or you think that your case might end up at trial for other reasons, you’ll want to choose an attorney with extensive trial experience.
3. What Should I Expect to Pay in Fees?
You’ve probably heard commercials where attorneys advertise that clients won’t have to pay any attorney fees unless they win the case. Unfortunately, criminal attorneys aren’t allowed to use contingent fee arrangements like that. In some cases, a criminal defense attorney might charge a flat fee for the entire matter, while in other cases, they might charge by the hour. Even if the attorney you’re meeting with charges by the hour, they might be able to give you a ballpark idea of what it will cost to resolve your case. Also, be sure to ask about what the attorney fees include, since overhead costs like copies and postage might not be factored in. Asking questions about the fee arrangement ahead of time can help you avoid any surprises down the road when you get your bill.
Largo, FL, residents in need of a criminal defense attorney can turn to Charles Holloway, a local attorney focusing on DUIs, drug offenses, sexual offenses, restraining order violations, and probation violations. He offers more than 30 years of experience and has tried more than 100 cases before a jury. Call us today to schedule a free initial consultation.