Being charged with a criminal offence here in Canada is no laughing matter. Not only is it stressful to have a charge laid against you, the outcome can affect your ability to find employment now and in the future, your odds of being approved for a rental unit or house, it can dictate where you can and can’t travel outside of the country, and in general just affect your general livelihood. What this means is that it’s something that needs to be taken very seriously by you from the get go, and ensure that you take all the best and most productive steps in dealing with the matter.
A criminal defence lawyer is often the very best approach for people to take, no matter how minor or major the crime is that you’ve been charged with. They are the ones that will have the knowledge, experience, and expertise in dealing with Canadian law and the legal system. So how do you go about picking the best criminal defence lawyer for your needs? Let’s take a closer look.
Make sure that you have a consultation first – before making a decision
One of the most important pieces of advice is to make sure you schedule a consultation with the lawyer before you go ahead and hire them. You want to meet with them to see how the rapport is and get their thoughts on how they’d approach your case.
The right lawyer is one that will make you feel as though they are in control, are ready to handle the challenge, understand what the best steps are, and garner your trust and confidence. All of this can be determined through that initial consultation.
Ask about their specific experience
You will want to be sure you ask about their experience when it comes to criminal charges like the one you are facing. Experience means they understand everything from bail conditions, driving restrictions, jail time, and the charge itself. They will be able to answer all your questions based on fact and experiences that they have encountered first-hand through other cases.
Take for example David Cohn Law, a criminal defence lawyer firm that has more than 30 years’ worth of experience. The practice areas include impaired drive over 80, drug related offences, murder, fraud and financial crimes, as well as sexual offences. They understand the process, the various types of defences and how to choose the best one for each case, and are well-versed in the Charter of Canadian Rights and Freedoms Challenges.
What will be required of you
Another question to ask if what will be required of you during the process? Sure the lawyer and their team will be handling all the work, but there may be some items and information that they will need from you. It’s wise to discuss these expectations in advance so there are no surprises.
How about communication?
There will no doubt be times during the process that you have a question or concern that you will want to discuss with your lawyer, so the lines of communication need to be made clear from the start. What is the best way to contact your lawyer, and when? This can save you a lot of stress, worry, and hassle if you are trying to contact them using the wrong channel or even the wrong time.
Finally you will need to discuss the cost of your legal defence, and how you can go about paying for it. You may need to pay in instalments, up-front, or at the end depending on what you set-up with the lawyer.