Legal Guide

What does a criminal lawyer do and what can you expect from them

If you are going through situations that may end up in a hefty fine or even prison time, the best thing for you to do is to get yourself a criminal lawyer. In case your income qualifies for it, you may also be able to get yourself a court-appointed lawyer.

As the name implies, a criminal lawyer helps you through criminal cases which may be impossible on your own. Even if you are someone with an exceptional IQ, law and legal system may be designed in such a manner that it is close to impossible to deal with it on your own. In criminal cases it is very much necessary for you to hire a criminal lawyer for your defense.

What is a criminal lawyer and what do they do?

A criminal lawyer is a trained professional that can deal with the unique aspects of every case and make sure that the case is presentable in the court of law. The task of the criminal lawyer is to use their knowledge and training for your benefit by finding subtle evidence or reasons that can help you win your case. A criminal lawyer is able to spot certain factors in your case that an ordinary person may not be able to do so. They may look for factors that can mitigate your case and even negate the aspect of the potential crime. Another thing that they are capable of is helping you even if you are guilty or maybe just lack evidence. Even if the case may not go in your favour, they are still capable of helping you in having your sentence reduced or having lesser prison time.         

Responsibilities of a Criminal Lawyer

Once you have hired a criminal lawyer, they may be responsible for the following tasks, some of which may be day to day activities.

  1. A criminal lawyer may be responsible to contact their clients using whatever medium is available to them, like email, calls, text messages, video calls and even in urgent or private cases meeting them in person as well.
  2. They may be responsible for reading up on case documents and evidence as well as the statutes (laws) that are concerned with it. In fact reading and researching on daily basis
  3. They may take notes or points that would prove to be helpful for the case and use them to strategize.

These are the major day to day tasks that a criminal lawyer may carry out outside the court. It may appear quite boring and a hectic routine filled with using mental energy, however, these daily struggles are the building blocks for your case in court.

Moreover, the preparation of a case may take months of research. The case itself may not last long enough within the courtroom, however, the research behind may take a considerably long span of time. Only a well researched and prepared case can process quickly without any possible surprises.

The other thing that is specifically done by a criminal lawyer in the court is applying the strategy. While it may seem like this is something you can do by yourself but in reality you are at a great loss without a professional lawyer even if your case is supposed to be on the winning side. A criminal lawyer knows how things play out in the court and they have a better know-how of many laws that you may not know and they might either be in your benefit or may go against you.

Inside the court, the job of the criminal lawyer is to examine the prosecution. This means that they will call for the witnesses that are in your defense and may cross-examine the information from the witnesses of the prosecution. They are responsible for explaining complex topics in court and to the jury therefore they must be trustworthy and well versed. All in all they need to be able to apply whatever they had strategized beforehand while dealing with whatever the prosecution has to offer.

Specialities of hiring a criminal lawyer

Plea Bargains

The criminal lawyer may negotiate with the prosecutor for a plea bargain which can help reduce some of your potential sentences. A plea bargain is a bargain to eliminate certain charges and therefore reduce some sentences. Prosecutors are no doubt unwilling for this type of negotiations. If this is done by some rookie they may not even let them stand for such a condition. However a criminal lawyer knows how to negotiate even in situations that may seem completely impossible. They can bargain for at least some edge that you yourself can not.

Sentence programs

Attorneys already have a general idea of what type of sentences you may end up with.

This gives them the privilege to decide your sentence programs for you. In many cases where you are guilty, they may pre-decide certain factors that can help reduce your sentences. Most sentences are charged in ways that you can not actually turn back for justice like for example a drug possession charge may definitely land you in jail. However, a criminal defense attorney may be able to get your sentence reduced by suggesting other alternatives like a drug treatment facility. This means they can actually help you with what you really need and at the same time may help you reduce your punishment.

Results of the case

A criminal attorney has enough knowledge and experience on their hands to predict how a case will go and what will be its result. They can actually help provide you with reality checks regarding your situation. Since they are already aware of the possible outcomes it is more likely that they can strategize accordingly. This means two things:

  1. They can actually work out your next major objective in the proceeding of your case
  2. They can offer you insight and reality checks regarding the direction of your trail

This is actually quite essential for your case considering this can actually help you decide on the steps that you want to take next and also in cases where there is plea bargain from the prosecutor side, they can help you decide on whether to go with it or not.

Awareness regarding rules and regulations

You may think that reading a few books here and there about criminal law can help you handle your case but it is not true at all. In fact, books are not enough. A criminal defense lawyer has to spend years of study and experience  in order to have a grasp on this particular area. They know rules and regulations that you may not even be able to find on your own. There are many rules and regulations that may exist on the secondary or indirect levels, buried under the surface wordings. Moreover, a lot of what may happen in court may even end up in working on loopholes in law. Even if you are somehow able to have a grasp over all these rules and laws, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you can use them to your advantage. There are many unwritten rules of the court that may actually hinder your own approach. Knowing both of them and using them to your advantage is something that you can only achieve after years of study and experience.

Pleading Guilty and Punishment

Many people may not see their way out of a case and may often plead guilty beforehand. Such people probably have know idea how things could have been used in their favor and their sentence may have been reduced. Actually, they might think that there is no way out other than pleading guilty but they don’t actually understand the cost of pleading guilty and how their sentence could have possibly been reduced if they had the right criminal attorney. At the very least a criminal lawyer may try all your options before you plead.

Managing Witnesses

A criminal lawyer can manage and produce witnesses way easier than you ever can by yourself. These are trained people who know their way in gathering evidence and statements. In fact, they are even capable of producing witnesses for the prosecution side if they are good enough. They are well versed in handling evidence and strategizing witnesses in a manner that you may benefit the most from. Many times, witnesses may even be reluctant to share information or give their statements in court. A trained attorney may know the driving force behind it and is able to handle it accordingly. In fact, many times, these witnesses may not come forward to you but may find it easier to talk to your attorney.

Handling the investigation and evidence

A huge part of the case depends upon investigation and finding evidence or witnesses. This may require proper investigators that can not only help with the investigation but may also be able to find evidence against the prosecution side. This may make the testimonies from that side appear less believable. A criminal lawyer not only ensures that the investigation is steady but also debates over the evidence and how it can be used in your favor or even used against you.


Many defendants tend to go to represent themselves in court over criminal cases. They think that they can handle what will happen behind the closed doors of the courtroom. This is actually a very bad decision considering books cannot replace a professional. There is a huge difference between reading law and practicing it. Moreover a criminal trial may easily turn against you if certain loopholes in law are manipulated by the prosecution side. To ensure that this doesn’t happen to you, it is better that you seek out a professional Criminal Defense Lawyer to represent you in court and help you win your case.

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