When you or a loved one has a negative encounter with the law, you will likely have several thoughts racing through your mind, one of which may include whether you should involve a criminal lawyer to handle your case.
There are different degrees of severity in all facets of the law, but if you or someone close to you is facing serious criminal charges, hiring a Florida criminal lawyer as soon as possible should be a top priority. You may choose to have consultation(s) with a few criminal lawyers to help you navigate your options. The criminal defense attorney you choose to hire should help you defend your case and protect your constitutional freedoms.
8 Scenarios When You May Want to Hire A Criminal Law Lawyer
When should you hire a criminal law lawyer in Florida? With several things going through your mind, knowing when you may want to hire a criminal lawyer is in your best interest. The following are eight instances it would behoove you to contact a criminal lawyer to discuss handling your case.
Scenario #1: Probation
Probation allows you to continue working and supporting your family and remain relatively free, so it’s important to take a probationary sentence seriously and adhere to all the specific rules to avoid going to prison. There are two kinds of probation violations in Florida, substantive and technical.
A substantive violation means the probationer has been accused of committing a crime while on probation.
A technical violation means the probationer allegedly broke one of the rules of their probation, which vary based on the situation.
If you have or are being accused of violating your probation, you may want to hire a criminal defense attorney.
Scenario #2: Juvenile Delinquencies
When a person younger than 18 is charged with a crime in Florida, it is usually handled by the Juvenile Justice System. However, there are some situations where a juvenile may be tried as an adult. Often, these cases are directly filed with the adult court in situations where the juvenile has been a repeat offender and/or has committed a very serious crime.
Scenario #3: Driving Under the Influence
Driving Under the Influence (DUI) laws in Florida are unique and complex. By hiring an experienced Florida criminal law attorney as soon as possible, they can determine if your arrest was lawful. You are also giving yourself the best chance of having a favorable outcome in your case.
If the police failed to follow strict procedures, a skilled attorney may be able to get the case dismissed. There are many ways to challenge a DUI charge in court, and the best option depends on the particulars of your arrest.
Scenario #4: Misdemeanors
Under Florida law, a misdemeanor is any criminal offense that is punishable by up to one year in prison. These offenses are handled by a county court judge and are considered less serious crimes than felony offenses. However, they can still result in prison time, probation, and/or fines, as well as a conviction on a person’s criminal record. There are a wide variety of crimes that are considered misdemeanors, which is why hiring a criminal justice lawyer is beneficial in this scenario.
Scenario #5: Felonies
Being charged with any kind of criminal offense can be a stressful situation. Felonies are particularly worrisome, as being convicted can not only lead to significant prison time, but may also affect your educational, housing, work, and financial opportunities in the future. Because of the potentially serious ramifications, it may be best to consult an experienced Florida criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
Scenario #6: Drug Charges
Drug offenses in Florida may be prosecuted as misdemeanors or felonies, depending on many factors, including the amount of drugs involved in the alleged crime. There are a few different types of drug charges, including drug possession, possession of drug paraphernalia, and trafficking.
Scenario #7: Murder
According to Florida law, both premeditated murder and felony murder are First-Degree Murder charges.
Premeditated murder is committed when a person kills another human being while carrying out a pre-planned act or scheme to end a life.
Felony murder is committed when a person kills another human being while engaged in the commission, or attempted commission, of certain statutorily enumerated felonies, regardless of whether they intended to cause anyone’s death.
Scenario #8: Any Criminal Trial
People are often eager to prove their innocence but apprehensive about what may happen in court, testifying on their own behalf, and what other witnesses might say. The best thing you can do to help your criminal trial case is retain an experienced Florida criminal lawyer who can help you understand the steps of a trial and guide you through the process.
Find the Best Criminal Lawyer Near Me
Whether or not you are at fault, hiring an experienced criminal lawyer can help level the playing field. We understand that facing criminal charges can be a long and emotional experience, which is why our team at Apfelbaum Law puts our expertise to work to defend your case. Contact us today to learn how we can help you.