While the initial cost of a criminal defense attorney may tempt you to rely on a public defender or even handle the case on your own, the lasting impact on your life far outweighs the cost of a good attorney.
Benefits From The Beginning
Although this may seem like quite the investment, it will save you money in the long run. A combination of experience from other criminal cases and an inside perspective will provide your attorney with the best insight into your case. This can result in better plea deals, decreased fines, or affordable bail.
When you choose a local and skilled defense attorney, it is highly likely that your attorney will already have relationships with prosecuting attorneys, police, and judges within Plymouth and will understand how they work.
Benefits After Being Charged
With years of study and observation, your local Michigan attorney will know all the proper procedures while also being able to easily spot mistakes or loopholes. Your attorney will be your ins and outs both in the courtroom and outside, ensuring you receive the best legal defense for your case. As you go through the process, you will benefit from your legal support’s knowledge of both the judicial system and the criminal laws of your state.
Criminal Laws In Michigan
As of 2015, the Michigan Supreme Court has ruled that guidelines that were previously considered mandatory, should now be considered advisory. This means that a sentencing court can now use its discretion to depart from the sentencing range specified in the guidelines.
The sentencing guidelines place various offenses into the following groups: crimes against a person, crimes against property, crimes involving a controlled substance, crimes against public order, crimes against public safety, and crimes against public trust. The crime is then further categorized into a class that is determined by the seriousness of the crime. Generally, this class determines the sentence.
What Can A Criminal Lawyer Do That You Can’t Do
If you choose to defend yourself, there are many things you will not have access to that a criminal defense attorney will. While in court, they are able to call witnesses in your defense and cross-examine the witnesses of the prosecution. They are also able to negotiate a plea bargain. This is important because prosecutors are often unwilling to negotiate if the defendant is representing themselves.
Your attorney will also be able to challenge your sentence, possibly bringing it down in a beneficial way such as less time incarcerated and then a transfer to a rehabilitation program for the remaining time of your sentence. The honest truth is that a criminal defense attorney will know what is going on much better than you do and will be able to predict the outcome of your trial. This offers a realistic insight into your case that you would not get otherwise.
Process Of Working With A Criminal Defense Attorney
The first thing that happens will be an intake call where you first discuss your case with a criminal defense attorney or their paralegal. They will ask you questions along the lines of your name, when is your next court date, your case number and division, and so forth. A date and time will then be set for an in-person consultation with the attorney.
At your first meeting, the attorney will interview you about your case. Evidence, police reports, review investigations, documents, any testimonies, and witnesses will all be discussed here. The attorney will create and present you with a plan of attack. If you choose to hire him or her, you will then pay a deposit toward the legal services retainer and sign some paperwork.
The criminal defense attorney will then carefully study your case, analyzing all evidence, and perhaps even getting some of it independently tested. Your attorney will keep in contact with you during this time, updating and explaining any developments in the case to you. It is ensured that you will understand every possible outcome of the case along with possible consequences.
A jury will then be selected for your trial. Your criminal defense attorney will be involved in the jury selection process. They may attempt to remove jurors if it is in the best interest of your case for a possible bias or any other reason your attorney sees fitting.
Plea Bargaining & Trial Participation
Your criminal defense attorney is responsible for negotiating with the prosecutor any plea bargains. They may be able to secure a more favorable deal for you that could result in a reduced sentence or a reduction of charges.
During the trial, your attorney will be fighting for you. He or she will examine the witnesses, cross-examine if need be, and try to convince the jury that the prosecution has failed.
Whether a plea bargain is accepted, or a judge has sentenced you for your crime, your attorney will continue to follow you through this process. He or she may attempt to further convince the judge or jury to limit your sentence or to discuss possible alternatives to incarceration.
Consult A Criminal Defense Attorney In Plymouth, Michigan
Whether you are facing a misdemeanor charge or serious time for a felony, let one of our highly skilled criminal defense attorneys in Plymouth fight for you. We want to help you properly defend yourself and navigate the legal system. There is no reason to work through this yourself when an experienced law firm can do it all for you.
The legal system is designed to make representing yourself almost impossible; the system rarely will work in your favor. This is why hiring someone to represent you is practically a necessity. In doing so, you will ensure that no mistakes are made and, if possible, you leave with a lessened sentence or punishment. Contact Kecskes, Gadd & Parker, PC, to learn more, today!