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How Much Does a Criminal Defense Lawyer Charge?

Are you facing a criminal charge? Are you hoping to find an excellent criminal defense attorney?

A criminal defense lawyer can help you before you’re even charged by a prosecutor. They may specialize in more specific areas of criminal defense, such as drug defense or DUIs.

A defense attorney will have a nuanced understanding of the criminal law in your area, and they will be able to challenge your accuser’s reasoning. It’s possible for these professionals to get the charges against you dropped before a trial even begins.

But how much does a criminal defense lawyer charge, and can you afford one?

Let’s take a look.

Why Should I Hire a Criminal Defense Attorney?

A good criminal defense attorney has the knowledge and temperament necessary to argue your case in court.

An experienced lawyer will have argued cases similar to yours before and have a secure understanding of how the law works.

You may, for example, have had your car searched in an illegal manner. Your defense attorney can make sure this is brought to light before you even appear in court.

An experienced criminal defense lawyer may also have existing relationships with prosecutors that can work in your favor. They may be able to negotiate a good plea deal or an affordable bond.

While it may seem like hiring a lawyer is a hefty expense, it may end up being economically advantageous for you.

A good lawyer, for example, may keep you from losing time at work or from having your professional license revoked. If you’re able to keep your job, the investment in a criminal defense lawyer is well worth it.

How Much Does a Criminal Defense Lawyer Charge?

A criminal defense lawyer for a misdemeanor could cost you anywhere from $2,000 to $3,000. And most lawyers charge more to defend someone who has been charged with a felony than a misdemeanor.

Some attorneys charge by the hour. In these cases, you can plan to spend around $150 per hour.

Hourly billing is advantageous if your case concludes quickly. It can get very expensive, however, if your case drags on. Make sure you do your research before deciding upon an attorney to make sure fees won’t get out of control.

Other factors come into play when it comes to the exact amount your lawyer will charge, so make sure you get a few different estimates from local attorneys so you know whatever you’ll end up paying is reasonable for your case and area.

Some cases are more complex and require extra preparation and more court appearances, in which case your attorney will charge you more.

Your attorney may also be more experienced. These professionals may charge more money. They could, however, end up costing you less in the end if they’re able to get your case resolved more quickly.

You can also expect your attorney fee to vary depending upon your geographical area. In general, those lawyers working in urban areas will be more pricey than rural attorneys.

In the past, criminal defense attorneys have required their fees upfront. Recently, however, they have begun to offer the option of payment plans. Whether or not they are offered may depend upon whether you’re being charged with a misdemeanor or a felony.

How Do I Find a Good Criminal Defense Attorney?

When you’re charged with a crime, it’s critical not to let your emotions take over. The best thing you can do is find yourself an experienced lawyer who will be able to get the best outcome for your case.

Start by asking trusted friends and family members to recommend attorneys they were happy with. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.

Was the lawyer able to get a good outcome? Were they able to communicate clearly throughout the process? Were there any unexpected fees?

You’ll want to look for a local attorney since these will be the folks with the most intimate knowledge of the law in your area. You’ll also want someone within driving distance of your home.

If you can’t get any personal recommendations, you can peruse the Internet for professionals in your area. Make sure you look for lawyers who specialize in criminal defense law.

These professionals will have information about their defense law experience on their websites. They might also provide you with proof of their expertise in more specific areas of criminal defense. When you call up offices, ask for at least three references that you can call about their experience.

Many criminal defense attorneys offer free initial consultations. This is a great time to get to know your lawyer and learn what you can about how they can help your case.

Ask your lawyer if they can give an example of a case similar to yours that they won. What was their strategy?

The right lawyer will be able to supply you with specific evidence of their ability to win your case fairly and professionally.

Money Matters

Before you hire a lawyer, make sure you get an estimate of their fees in writing. A professional attorney will be able to detail the rate you’ll be paying, as well as any extra fees that could come up.

If you’re unsure about a particular fee, the right lawyer will be able to explain it clearly to you. Don’t go with someone who can’t be honest about what you’ll be paying for.

Moving On

How much does a criminal defense lawyer charge? The answer will depend largely on your case and where you live. The right lawyer, however, will be able to get you the best outcome for your case and help you to get on with your life.

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