There are times when a person may have an advantage hiring a local criminal lawyer, and other times when an outside is probably needed.
When should I hire a local criminal defense lawyer:
- When cost is an issue, a local lawyer may charge a lesser rate because there is not as great of a distance for the lawyer to travel. Hence, the time and expense of commuting to court can be factored into the fee the lawyer charges;
- The local criminal lawyer may have relationships with the prosecutor, city attorney, and Judge that are favorable in negotiating a favorable plea bargain (when available) and/or sentence agreement;
- The local criminal lawyer might have more information concerning the best resolution that the prosecution will enter into, and the likely sentence the court will impose;
- The local criminal lawyer may have inside information into the types of sentencing arguments that resonate with the Judge;
- The local criminal lawyer may have a better understanding of the community, and the types of jurors that would be best suited for the particular case.
When should I hire an outside criminal defense lawyer:
- In some jurisdictions there may be pressure on the local criminal defense lawyer to not contest the cases zealously, or to resolve cases by plea. This is especially true if the local criminal defense lawyer derives a large portion of his or her income from court appointments.
- Local politics may potentially seep its way into how the local criminal defense lawyer handles the case;
- The prosecutor may be more willing to negotiate with an outsider, because he or she knows the limitations in the ability of the local lawyer based upon prior experience with the lawyer;
- If the case is in a smaller jurisdiction, the local criminal lawyer might have very limited trial experience;
- The outside lawyer may have novel ways of litigating the case that are not contemplated or attempted by the local lawyer.
However, what is most important to your case is the quality of the legal representation that you are provided with. Tenacity, work ethic, experience, legal ability, the ability to communicate effectively, the ability to handle pressure, and litigation skills are the most important qualities that your lawyer should possess. A local or outside advantage probably won’t matter if bad lawyering is involved with your case.
Hiring the best criminal defense lawyer:
How do I find the best criminal lawyer?
- Do your research. Is the lawyer well regarded by former clients and other lawyers? What do online reviews say?
- Take the time to interview your potential criminal defense lawyer. Does the lawyer seem to know what they are talking about? Does the lawyer care about the outcome? Does the lawyer’s advice make sense? How does the lawyer present himself and present the case?
- How much experience does the lawyer have. Although a younger lawyer may sound enthusiastic, there is no substitute for experience on criminal cases both inside and outside the courtroom.
- Trust your instincts. What does your gut tell you about the type of representation you will receive from your lawyer? Ask yourself if you could do better. With criminal law, there is often only 1 chance to obtain the best possible outcome.
- Will the lawyer that you meet with handle the case, or will it be handled by an associate?
If you need a great criminal defense lawyer in Michigan, you should consider hiring attorney Daniel Hilf of Hilf & Hilf, PLC.