If you’ve been charged with a crime, it is important to be afforded your rights, including the right to build a defence, develop your court strategy, negotiate with the prosecution and more.
To do this, it is imperative that you have the right defence lawyer in your corner. But you want to find the best criminal lawyer Perth has to offer, so be sure to ask them these seven questions before signing any contracts:
How long have you practised criminal law?
Experience is essential to ensuring you have the best legal case. Why? Because an experienced defence lawyer has the skills and knowledge to anticipate the prosecution’s case and how to negotiate any foreseeable hurdles.
Not only should they have years of experience practising criminal law, but they should have experience in your specific field. If they are unable to demonstrate experience in your particular area then that should be enough to stop you from enlisting their services.
Where did you study law?
This question is still applicable despite Australian law schools and their high standard. Why? Because you want to ensure your potential defence lawyer has studied at one or more of such reputable legal institutions.
You may also like to inquire as to whether or not the potential lawyer has ever been charged or sanctioned in Western Australia for legal misconduct as your potential lawyer should be in the good books with the court system.
Have you had any cases like this before?
This comes back to having knowledge about your particular field. Your potential lawyer shouldn’t only have a working knowledge of your case’s legal technicalities – they should also have hands-on experience in the matter.
An experienced lawyer will be able to tell you about a similar case they have handled and its outcome. If the lawyer appeared incompetent in that particular case then it might be a good idea to reconsider their services.
Do you have any past client testimonials?
You may have read the Google reviews saying that the criminal lawyer did a great job, and these reviews go a long way to proving the lawyer’s solid reputation.
But you might also want to ask if they have any written testimonials from past clients. Written testimonials are usually more detailed than your quickly thrown-together Google review, and can tell you more about the way in which the potential lawyer handles the legal process as well as client communication.
Will you be the one who handles the case?
Many law firms will have its partners handle the original consultation before handing the work on to a junior. Whilst this may be fine, as you will likely be charged a lower hourly rate, iit may not be the best option if you require a truly experienced lawyer who knows the ins and outs of cases like yours.
Can we avoid going to trial?
A good defence lawyer will have experience in preventing the need to go to trial. This can be done through a plea bargain or out of court settlement. Trials can be incredibly tiring and unpleasant procedures, and you yourself may like to avoid going to trial if the matter can be handled outside of court.
If we have to go to trial, what would be your strategy?
If your case has to go to trial, it would be good to know that your lawyer has the experience to produce a sound defence strategy on your behalf. Ask them about previous strategies and whether they have been successful or not.