The outcome of your criminal defense case can depend on the quality of who you choose to defend you. Selecting the right attorney is almost as important as winning the case outright. No matter what you are being accused of, be it drug charges, sex offenses, or violent crimes, a good lawyer can be the difference between walking away or going away for a long time.
Do They Have a Good Reputation?
Choose an attorney who is respected. An attorney with a good reputation should have references or testimonials from past clients to back it up. Do your research within the legal community to vet an attorney before taking them on as your legal counsel. Use the Illinois State Bar Association to see if the attorney has any disciplinary history.
They Should Be Focused On Criminal Law
A criminal defense attorney should be focused on criminal law above all else. The attorney should be licensed to practice Illinois law. They should be knowledgeable about the criminal charges you are facing and be able to legally defend you against them. You can verify an attorney’s license status on the Illinois State Bar Association website.
Consider Their Experience
Not only should your attorney focus on criminal law but they should also have experience in doing so. Experienced criminal defense attorneys can handle themselves better in the face of unforeseen obstacles, exude confidence in court, and represent you with everything they have available to them. Ask your attorney about their experience with previous cases like yours during your initial consultation.
An Effective Communicator
A good lawyer should be able to communicate with you, remain responsive to your needs, and be able to answer any questions you might have regarding your case. The attorney should keep you informed on the progress of your case throughout the entire process. An attorney with excellent communication style and skills will allow you to express your concerns and address them promptly.
Ask About the Fees
Fees are a mandatory part of retaining a lawyer to represent you in a court of law. These fees can often be quite expensive so you should ask about them upfront. A good attorney will be clear and open about any fees or expenses you should expect while they represent you. Some attorneys charge by the hour, while others charge a flat fee. Some will even offer you a free consultation to discuss your case in full and determine the best course of action moving forward. A good rule of thumb is to ask about a possible payment plan so as not to be overwhelmed all at once.
Go with Your Gut
A great attorney will make you feel comfortable about placing your defense in their hands. If your gut tells you that one attorney is not the right attorney then there are plenty of others who are capable of representing you in your time of need. It is better to work with an attorney you trust and believe will fight for your best interests from the start.
Contact a Naperville, IL Criminal Defense Attorney
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