Retaining a Criminal Defense Attorney

Finding an attorney to represent you in a criminal case is a serious decision, since your freedom is at stake. Recommendations from friends and family are usually the best place to begin in your search for an attorney. You can also call any attorney's office and ask for a consultation, which is generally free. A good criminal defense attorney will get back to you that same day, if she is available. If at all possible, do not attempt to defend yourself against criminal charges.

Additionally, every state has an organization of attorneys called a "bar." Each state bar has a Web site with information about lawyers practicing criminal law.

TIP: In some jurisdictions, attorneys may be "board certified" in a specialized area of law by their state bar association. A certification presumes an expertise above and beyond a lawyer who is not certified. In those states offering certification, a list of certified criminal lawyers is available from the state bar, and may also be noted in attorney listings in the Yellow Pages.

When dealing with a busy criminal attorney, you should expect on occasion to relay messages through her secretary or paralegal. However, you want an attorney who personally returns your phone calls within 24 hours if she is in town or not in trial. A prompt response indicates a confident, prepared, organized attorney who is attentive to her clients.

Our use of cookies

We use necessary cookies to make our site work. We would also like to set some optional cookies. We won't set these optional cookies unless you enable them. Please choose whether this site may use optional cookies by selecting 'On' or 'Off' for each category below. Using this tool will set a cookie on your device to remember your preferences.

For more detailed information about the cookies we use, see our Cookie notice.

Necessary cookies

Necessary cookies enable core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility. You may disable these by changing your browser settings, but this may affect how the website functions.

Functionality cookies

We'd like to set cookies to provide you with a better customer experience. For more information on these cookies, please see our cookie notice.