Protecting your Rights with a Virginia Criminal Lawyer

Virginia (Photo credit: taberandrew)
Criminal law is a complex and overwhelming system. Attempting to represent yourself in court over criminal charges will often result in failure, unless you have prior legal knowledge. Your are entitled to legal representation so if you are facing criminal charges it is wise to hire in the services of an experienced Virginia criminal lawyer to prepare and deliver your defense.

Protecting your legal rights is one the main tasks your Virginia criminal lawyer is charged with and they should also work with your best interests in mind. This include ensuring your defense seeks to obtain the best possible outcome for your case taking into account the circumstances of the crime and the evidence against you. Getting professional legal advice and help from a criminal lawyer is something you should do as early as possible as putting together a good defense can take time and a lot of work.

Finding a Virginia criminal lawyer can be as easy as asking around friends and family for recommendations. This is often the best way of finding the best lawyer for your case. Other options for finding a lawyer include checking out online legal directories which often carry adverts and profiles for lawyers in your local area. Checking out local press such as directories and newspapers for adverts and finally approaching the local bar association for a referral.
The cost of hiring a criminal lawyer can vary widely and will depend on many different factors. Many lawyers will work to an hourly rate, whilst others may agree a standard fee with you. It is a good idea to arrange to meet with at least two or three lawyers and talk to them about your case, their experience and fee structures. This first consultation is usually free of charge and you are under no obligation to hire them afterwards. When you decide to hire a lawyer you should get any agreement over fees in writing first and make sure it includes any additional charges, costs or fees such as court fees, administration costs and hire costs for additional legal personnel to work on your case.

If hiring a private Virginia criminal lawyer is beyond your financial means then you maybe able to find a lawyer to represent you who will work for reduced costs or pro bono' which means they will take the case on for no fee (although other costs may be applied). You can al so negotiate with a lawyer over fees and come to an agreement which suits you both, although not every lawyer is willing to negotiate over fees.

Your final option is to ask for a court appointed lawyer at your arraignment hearing. Court appointed lawyers are paid for by the state and although you have the right to free legal representation, many states require defendants to prove they do not have the financial means to pay for private representation. If you are eligible then a lawyer will be appointed to you straight away.

Hiring a Virginia criminal lawyer does not need to be a difficult and overwhelming process. It is worth remembering that any lawyer you hire works for you so you should not be afraid to ask any and all questions you may have.

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