Whether they are prosecuting people who break the law or defending those accused of crimes, criminal lawyers play an important role in our society. Learn everything you need to know about this challenging, rewarding legal career.
Defending an individual against criminal charges requires a strong knowledge of the law as well as the ability to develop a persuasive case that proves innocence or seeks a reduced sentence. This is particularly true in cases involving serious felonies and misdemeanors that carry substantial fines or prison time. Criminal defense attorneys must also be able to work with investigators to find and present evidence that may weaken the prosecution’s case.
It is also the criminal defense attorney’s job to advise an individual during police questioning so that they do not incriminate themselves. The Fifth Amendment and “Miranda Rights” ensure that individuals have the right to an attorney at all times, and a good criminal lawyer can use this to an advantage by ensuring that an individual does not make statements that could be used against them later in court.
A good criminal defense lawyer can also convince the prosecution to drop charges, either because of a lack of evidence or due to improper procedure. They can also help an individual obtain expungement after a period of time, removing any record of the crime from public view.
Many criminal attorneys offer free initial consultations, which gives them a chance to meet a potential client and discuss the specifics of the case at hand. They should be upfront about what they can and cannot do, and should be easy to contact if any questions arise during the course of a case. criminal lawyer