Should I Hire a Lawyer for a Misdemeanor Offense?

December 5, 2022

A misdemeanor typically has a jail time of no more than one year. The fines for such crimes are also on the lower end of the spectrum. Thus, you might wonder if you need to go so far as to invest in hiring a criminal defense lawyer for your case. These are some of the leading reasons that hiring such an attorney is an excellent thing to do: 

Your Case May Be Dismissed

An attorney can start working for you the first time you speak to that person. One of the first things a lawyer can do is try to get your case dismissed on a technicality. For example, a case cannot proceed if the police officer never read you your rights. A case might also get dismissed if the officer didn’t follow proper protocol when making the arrest. 

You Might Be Able To Bargain

You can try to put in a plea bargain if you have an attorney. A plea bargain is a lesser sentence in exchange for the admission of a lesser crime. For example, you would plead guilty to a disorderly person’s offense instead of misdemeanor assault and receive a favorable consequence, such as community service or fines.

Your attorney will be the one to approach the prosecution and propose such an agreement, but only if you are willing to say you are guilty of something. The plea bargain can’t happen without your go-ahead. 

The Attorney Can Use a Strong Defense

Hiring an attorney is smart if your case is complex and you want to prove your innocence. In that case, you should hire a tenured attorney who is also invested enough to fight hard to get a "not guilty" ruling.

It’s never a good idea to fight any charges without an attorney because you won’t have the resources or knowledge of the law that legal experts have. Take a chance on hiring a legal practitioner, and you might end up getting released with the court ruling that you are innocent. 

Your Sentence Might Be Lighter

It’s smart to have a lawyer by your side, even if the judge rules that you are guilty. An attorney can still step in and request leniency based on your character, circumstances, or the nature of the crime. For example, you might get a break if this is the first offense and your attorney makes a good case for leniency.

Perhaps he or she will give you a break if you have children as well. Another reason a judge might show you mercy is if you are a generally good person who fell upon hard times or was coerced by another party to participate in the crime. You will still be held accountable for your part, but you may not need to do the maximum sentence. 

You now know some excellent reasons to hire an attorney for a misdemeanor accusation. You can reach out to a respectable attorney and schedule a consultation to discuss your options. You don’t have to accept representation, but it may be in your best interest. 

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K.J. Law P.A.