Maybe, maybe not. That is entirely up to you. You may choose not to fight certain misdemeanor or traffic infractions and simply take the punishment or pay the fines. But if you are facing federal charges — like possession or distribution of child pornography, which could result in a long period of time in prison and placement on the sex offender registry — you should hire an experienced federal defense attorney.

Where Do I Find The Right Defense Lawyer?

There are many ways to find defense lawyers in your area:

  • Ask a friend or relative for suggestions
  • Search the Internet for criminal defense attorneys in your area
  • Contact the local bar association and ask about their lawyer referral program
  • Ask for suggestions at the courthouse

But How Do I Choose?

Choosing which defense lawyer is right for you and your situation is the next important step. Most defense lawyers offer a free consultation. Some questions you should ask during this meeting include:

  • Has the attorney has appeared in the court where your case will be heard?
  • Has the attorney has handled cases like yours before?
  • What successes has the attorney had on behalf of other clients?
  • Is the attorney willing to take your case to trial or will he or she only work with you through initial appearances and plea negotiation?
  • Has the attorney been recognized by his or her peers for knowledge and performance in criminal defense?
  • Can the attorney answer your questions as to potential outcomes and potential penalties that may result from the charges you face?

Last, but certainly not least, you will need to consider whether you can afford the attorney that you choose. An effective criminal defense lawyer can be expensive; you should discuss fees and costs with the attorney up front so that you know what to expect.

Talk to the attorney about what methods of payment the firm will accept. Some offices may allow you to pay by credit card or may allow you to set up a payment plan. You should be upfront with your questions; the last thing you or the attorney wants is to have to withdraw from your defense because you have not paid for his or her services.

Consider the Marcilliat & Mills PLLC, In Charlotte, Wilmington and Raleigh

When your future is on the line and you have questions about what to expect because you are facing federal criminal charges, finding the right lawyer for you and your situation is an important step in protecting your own rights.

Marcilliat & Mills PLLC has federal defense attorneys based in North Carolina and consulting with clients across the nation. Request a consultation by calling 919-838-6643 or contact us by email. We will discuss your case and how we can help you fight the charges for the best possible outcome.