After someone is arrested, a criminal defense lawyer is often one of the first people they call. But do you really understand what a criminal defense lawyer does?
If you’ve watched any courtroom dramas on television, you may think you know all about how criminal defense lawyers work. The problem is that these television shows and movies have created an unrealistic portrayal of criminal defense lawyers and what they do.
We want to break the myths and misconceptions about criminal lawyers and their role in the court system. This article will debunk some of the common myths you may hear about criminal defense lawyers.
#1. Public Defenders are Just as Effective as Criminal Defense Lawyers
Every person charged with a crime has the right to a lawyer under the Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution. The Office of the Public Defender ensures those who can not afford a lawyer receive representation.
While public defenders can be skilled and knowledgeable lawyers, they often have an overwhelming caseload and are often busy. As a result, they may not be able to provide you with the time and effort needed to properly keep you in the loop, and clients are often dissatisfied with communication and responsiveness of their assigned lawyer.
When you hire an experienced criminal defense lawyer, they will be able to dedicate the time, effort, and required resources to get the best possible outcome for your case. We’re talking about your freedom here. That isn’t something you want to take a gamble on.
#2. You Won’t See Your Criminal Defense Lawyer Outside of the Courtroom
When you watch a courtroom drama, you tend to only see the criminal defense lawyer hard at work in the courtroom. In the real world, a good criminal defense lawyer will spend a substantial amount of time preparing for a case before even making it to the courtroom.
Your criminal defense lawyer should:
- Meet with your regularly to discuss your case
- Answer questions you may have
- Work on finding witnesses and relevant evidence
- Research laws pertinent to your case
- Develop a strong defense
- Preparing you for what you can expect in the courtroom
#3. There’s No Need for a Criminal Defense Lawyer if You’re Pleading Guilty
One of the most dangerous myths regarding criminal defense is that you don’t need a criminal defense lawyer if you intend to plead guilty. No matter your intended plea, you should always seek the advice of an experienced criminal defense lawyer.
After you plead guilty, there will be a sentencing hearing where the judge will determine what sentence they will impose. Your criminal defense lawyer can not only provide you with information on sentencing, but they can work to develop a strong argument for a lesser sentence.
#4. Criminal Defense Lawyers are “Shady”
People often stereotype criminal defense lawyers as untrustworthy, greedy, or morally corrupt. While there are good and bad lawyers, most criminal defense lawyers are good people who know how important it is to balance their ethical obligations with their duty to their clients.
A qualified criminal defense lawyer will do all they can to help their clients. But when it comes down to it, they will not risk all the hard work they put in to become a lawyer by making an unethical decision to win a case.
#5. All Criminal Defense Lawyers are the Same
Like everything in life, you will come across lawyers who are good at their job and some who are not so great at their job. It comes down to skill, experience, and how often they win cases. An experienced criminal defense lawyer knows the legal system and what the prosecutor will likely try to win a case.
Some lawyers will advise their clients to accept a plea deal from the start. However, a dedicated lawyer will weigh the evidence and the possibility of an acquittal before making that recommendation.
Get the Experienced Legal Representation You Deserve
Contrary to the Hollywood version of a criminal defense lawyer, in real life, they know they are not above the law and will work hard to provide their clients with the best defense possible. Lawyers have taken an oath to abide by the law, and breaking that oath can have significant repercussions.
If you find yourself on the wrong side of the law and need a criminal defense lawyer you can count on, turn to Jeremy Widder Law. For over a decade, we have represented hundreds of clients who have been charged with offenses ranging from DUI to murder. When you work with Jeremy Widder Law, we won’t let your case go unheard.
Contact us today for a free consultation.