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What can a criminal defense attorney do for me?

If you are facing criminal charges, you may be wondering if you need a criminal defense attorney. Whether you are facing a misdemeanor or felony, it is almost always beneficial to have someone fighting for your rights in court.

The United States legal system is designed to make handling your own affairs in criminal court very difficult. Many people think that their charges are minor and that they can take their chances with the judge, only to end up with an unnecessarily harsh sentence. A qualified criminal defense attorney can assist you with various parts of your case and make sure that you are protected throughout the criminal process.

Criminal prosecutors have one goal in mind: to get a conviction. Criminal defense attorneys, on the other hand, are focused on doing what is best for their client. While no two cases are exactly the same, criminal defense attorneys will use their knowledge and past experience to come up with arguments to poke holes in the prosecution's case. Your attorney will call witnesses to the stand to support you and cross-examine the prosecution's witnesses to cast doubt upon their testimony. If you are found guilty, your attorney may be able to come up alternative sentencing options to keep your jail time to a minimum. For example, your attorney may suggest that you spend part of your sentence in a drug rehabilitation facility.

In some cases, your attorney may work with the prosecutor to come up with a plea deal to reduce your sentence or drop certain charges against you. Attempting to negotiate with the prosecutor on your own may result in an unfair plea deal.

Criminal defense attorneys can be beneficial in many ways, no matter how minor or serious your charges are.

Source: FindLaw, "What You Can Expect from the Best Criminal Defense Lawyer," accessed on Oct. 23, 2017

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