Getting arrested for a crime, regardless of its severity, can be an extremely stressful and traumatizing experience. With the fear of imprisonment and damage to their reputation, many wonder if and when they should call a criminal defense lawyer. Failing to have proper representation can lead to significant legal consequences, both criminal and financial. Whether you are accused of a misdemeanor or a serious felony, seeking legal advice and representation is essential as soon as possible.
1. If You Have Been Arrested or Charged with a Crime:
The first instance when you should call a criminal defense lawyer is if you’ve been arrested, detained, or charged with a crime. From minor traffic violations to felony charges, having a criminal defense lawyer on your side can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case. A criminal defense lawyer has extensive knowledge and experience in the legal system, and their expertise can save you from severe legal consequences.
2. If You Are Under Investigation:
If you suspect that you’re under investigation for a crime, it’s critical to call a criminal defense lawyer immediately. An experienced criminal defense attorney can intervene in the investigation process and protect you. They can guide you through the proceedings and protect your rights by limiting the extent of the investigation and preventing unlawful searches and seizures.
3. If Your Charges Were Filed by the State:
If the state has filed charges against you, you must call a criminal defense lawyer immediately. A prosecutor will be assigned to your case; they have the resources and experience to investigate and build a case against you. Having a criminal defense lawyer on your side will level the playing field and help you fight back against the state’s aggression.
4. If You’re Facing Jail Time:
If you’re facing jail time or a criminal record that could have long-term implications on your life, it’s essential to contact a criminal defense lawyer immediately. They can help you explore the available legal options, like plea bargains and alternative sentencing arrangements. Additionally, they can negotiate on your behalf to reduce your sentence or pursue probation instead of jail time.
5. If You Have Prior Convictions:
If you have prior criminal convictions, calling a criminal defense lawyer is crucial if you’re facing new charges. Repeat offenders face tougher sentencing, and a criminal defense lawyer can work to reduce the severity of the punishment or pursue alternate sentencing options.
Austin Criminal Defense Attorneys
If you are facing criminal charges in Austin, TX, don't face them alone. Contact Smith & Vinson Law Firm today at (512) 359-3743 for a consultation. Our experienced criminal defense lawyers are committed to protecting your rights and fighting for the best possible outcome in your case.