Finding the right criminal lawyer: Things to know before you start enquiring
Getting a criminal attorney will help you fight your case and ensure that it’s done legally. A criminal lawyer can represent people charged with criminal offences and act on their behalf to defend them at a trial. With a lawyer, you’re also likely to receive better service than if you proceed without one.
So, what should you know before you start enquiring about a criminal lawyer? The first thing to answer is why you need a criminal lawyer.
Why do I need a criminal lawyer?
Instead of one, we’ll give you four good reasons to get a professional criminal lawyer for your case.
First, because the legal system has greater resources for investigating and preparing for trials when charged criminally or even before so-called “fact-finding” (non-criminal investigation), the client is more likely to receive a fair outcome from the court process.
Second, an experienced lawyer will have knowledge of the law in Canada and possibly make many suggestions as to how your case could be approached in a way that addresses specific legal issues with which you are faced.
Third, being represented by an experienced and capable lawyer can save time for you because that lawyer can review any information available about your case, research relevant precedents, prepare written submissions, and provide briefings on what those might look like at trial — which avoids having to do the same research yourself.
Fourth, decent legal services are essential to maintain our democratic system since they allow individuals like accused offenders to conduct their own defence at trial where they might already be judged by the media or the people.
How to evaluate a lawyer’s abilities?
This is a big one. You need to be able to determine who’s a better fit for your case. This can be done in parts. Make sure you do enough research, see enough references, and ask enough questions to know about all these factors:
What is their experience in the relevant field?
This often includes the number of successful cases and the number of years in active legal practice. Paralegal experience can be ignored here.
What is their reputation?
You can find this out by asking around and checking references. Have they been known for some big local case?
How easy is it to communicate with them?
A good lawyer should be able to listen well and take notes. Discuss your case at length. Cross out anyone who’s less interested in listening and more:
- Interested in bombarding suggestions
- Eager to do planning or discuss financials
- Stiff or indifferent in appearance and body language
Even if someone is listening, it’s critical to know whether they are really paying attention or not. This can be checked by seeing if they remember some of the details you talked about.
Generally, look for someone who listens well, remembers the details, asks questions, shows genuine interest, and is easy to talk to. An attentive lawyer will improve your chances in court.
Looking for an experienced criminal lawyer Mississauga? Michelle Johal is a good attorney with an excellent track record in criminal law cases.