Tips for Preparing Your Defense with Help from Your Criminal Lawyer

Being charged for a criminal offense does not always have to lead to jail time. However, without proper legal representation, one mistake is all it would take for you to end up doing time anyway.

As the defendant, it is your right to have your day in court and be properly represented by your criminal lawyer so you have a chance to prove your innocence. Dealing with a criminal charge is by no means an easy task, but hiring an experienced defense lawyer will make the process as painless as possible.

Three important C’s also play a very important role in this process: Cooperation, Coordination, and Communication.

Cooperation – The first thing your lawyer will require is your cooperation. In order for them to come up with a viable strategy for your defense, they will need all the information they can get from you.

The more forthcoming you are about your circumstances, the faster your defense’s progress could be. It is your lawyer’s job to make sure that your defense is going to be airtight, but at the same time, it is also up to you to guarantee that your lawyer knows the whole truth.

If you offer an alibi, for example, it must be certain to fit with the rest of the story that you will be presenting in court. Otherwise, the smallest inconsistency can be spotted by the plaintiff’s counsel, and your alibi will not be able to stand scrutiny. By giving your lawyer full cooperation, especially in the formulation of your defense and providing truthful information, you can better anticipate the weak and strong points of your case.

Coordination – Although you may think that you have a much better strategy for your defense, refrain from taking the matter into your own hands. Not working in coordination with your lawyer could very well cost you your case.

In some instances, the prosecutor may approach with an offer of a deal, such as a plea bargain. Essentially, a plea bargain requires the defendant to agree to plead guilty or no contest. In exchange, the prosecutor offers to decrease the number of charges or reduce it to a lesser degree. The agreement may also involve the recommendation of a specific fine or penalty.

While it may certainly expedite the resolution of your case, this is not something that you should decide on unilaterally and without counsel from your lawyer. The consequences of accepting a plea bargain may be more disadvantageous to you than you realize–especially if your goal is to prove innocence–and by then it would be too late to back out of it.

Remember that even with all the purported benefits of agreeing to make a plea bargain, you still are essentially admitting to the commission of the crime, subjecting yourself to some form of punishment, and having all of that on your permanent record.

Communication – Keeping in constant communication with your criminal lawyer is crucial for the success of your defense. Although your lawyer will primarily be in charge of defining a strategy, you must also keep up to date as to the progress of your case.

It is in your best interest to know what is going on with your defense because you are the one who will be directly benefitting from it after all. This also makes it easier for you and your lawyer to make necessary adjustments to your strategy should the situation call for it.

These, of course, are just some of the more basic requirements of coming up with a solid defense for your criminal case. At the core of all these efforts is the need to find a defense lawyer, such as those from Your Arizona Lawyer, who can truly be up to the task to represent you in court.

Sources:

Do I Need a Lawyer When I’m Charged with a Crime? NOLO.
Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Criminal Lawyer. Attorneys.

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