Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

10 Questions to Ask a Criminal Defense Attorney Before Hiring Them

I got a call yesterday from a women who wanted to fire her current criminal defense attorney because he wasn’t communicating with her.  Unfortunately, this happens at least once a month.  While I want to support my fellow criminal defense attorneys, it can be hard when they just aren’t doing what they need to do.  Many times, people call and hire the first person they talk to.  They do this because the attorney talks a good game, and the person doesn’t know what questions to ask.  Facing criminal charges can be one of the most challenging experiences in a person’s life. During this difficult time, it’s crucial to have a skilled and trustworthy criminal defense attorney by your side. But with so many attorneys to choose from, how do you find the right one for your case? To help you make an informed decision, here are ten questions I tell people to ask criminal defense attorneys before you hire them:

  1. What Is Your Experience in Handling Cases Like Mine? Start by getting a sense of the attorney’s background. You’ll want to hire someone with experience in cases similar to yours. Whether it’s DUI, drug offenses, or more serious charges, an attorney who understands the complexities of your case can provide valuable insights and strategies.
  2. What Is Your Success Rate in Similar Cases? Ask about their track record. While past results don’t guarantee future success, an attorney with a history of positive outcomes may be better equipped to handle your case effectively.
  3. How Will You Communicate with Me? Effective communication is key in any legal partnership. Discuss how often the attorney will update you on your case and the preferred mode of communication, whether it’s emails, phone calls, or in-person meetings.
  4. Who Will Be Handling My Case? Ensure you know who will be responsible for your case. In some firms, senior partners may initially meet with clients but then delegate the work to associates. Make sure you are comfortable with the attorney who will be actively representing you.
  5. What Is Your Legal Strategy for My Case? Understanding the attorney’s approach to your case is crucial. They should be able to outline a clear strategy tailored to your specific situation. Ask about potential challenges and their plan to overcome them.
  6. What Are the Potential Outcomes of My Case? A good attorney should provide realistic expectations. While they can’t guarantee results, they can give you an idea of the potential outcomes and the consequences you might face.
  7. What Are Your Fees and Payment Plans? Discuss the attorney’s fee structure upfront. Make sure you understand how and when you’ll be billed. Some attorneys offer payment plans to ease the financial burden.
  8. Do You Have References or Client Testimonials? Request references from past clients or ask for testimonials. Hearing about others’ experiences can provide valuable insights into the attorney’s professionalism and effectiveness.
  9. How Do You Handle Client Confidentiality? Ensure that the attorney understands the importance of client-attorney confidentiality and is committed to protecting your privacy.
  10. Are You Familiar with Local Courts and Prosecutors? An attorney who is familiar with the local legal landscape and has relationships with prosecutors can be advantageous. They may be more adept at negotiating favorable deals or navigating the court system effectively.

Remember, hiring a criminal defense attorney is not just about their legal expertise but also about finding someone you trust and feel comfortable working with. Take the time to ask these questions and evaluate their responses carefully. Trust your instincts and choose an attorney who genuinely cares about your case and your future.  The decision to hire a criminal defense attorney is a critical one that can significantly impact the outcome of your case.  By asking these essential questions and carefully considering their responses, you can make an informed choice and secure the legal representation you need during this challenging time. Your freedom and future are at stake, so don’t rush the decision – choose wisely.

If you are facing criminal charges and need experienced and trustworthy legal representation, call our law firm today at 504-434-7000. We’re here to help you navigate this difficult time and work toward the best possible outcome for your case. Don’t wait – your future depends on the decisions you make today.