Why Is A Private Attorney The Best Choice To Handle Your Criminal Case In New Jersey?
Interviewer: Why is it more advantageous to hire a private attorney, rather than a public defender, to handle your criminal case? Why is it disadvantageous to proceed alone; and just throw yourself at the mercy of the court?
Carl: When they go to municipal court, a lot of people do not realize the prosecutor does not work for them. The prosecutor works for the municipality of the town you got the ticket in.
The prosecutor is not able to give you legal advice. They have their own agenda. That agenda is number one, to clear the case. The prosecutor hopes to get a fine; and maybe even points assessed to you.
The judge does not work with you either. Judges cannot give you legal advice. Staff members at the court also cannot give you legal advice. In order to get personalized, customized legal advice that pertains to your case and your background, you need to have an attorney.
You need an attorney who understands the facts of your case, and the charges. You need an attorney who understands what is important to you. He is the one who is going to spend time listening to you.
Do you need a few months to resolve your case? Do you want to get it done quickly? Do you have quite a few points on your license? Can you take any more points on your license? You need to have an attorney there listening to what your needs are.
When faced with the challenge of going to municipal court on your own or hiring a private attorney, figure out for yourself whether you can accomplish your goals. Figure out if, maybe, you are a little bit over your head.
If you are going with a public defender, first you have to qualify. Second, you have to pay a fee. Sometimes the fees charged by courts for a public defender are not that far from the fees I charge to do an entire case.
Another point is public defenders are not likely to spend time with you. I would spend time with you figuring out what is good for your case, what a good result is, and how to accomplish that result. I will spend the time listening to you and learning what is important to you.
Interviewer: Why are people afraid to even talk to an attorney?
Carl: There are several reasons. Number one, right off the bat, people think attorneys are too expensive. They think if they get involved with and meet an attorney, the attorney will charge for even a consultation. People think the overall fee itself would be just too much for them to handle.
They would rather just go to court and hope for the best. In reality, legal fees can be quite expensive. It also depends where the case is and what the charges are.
However, I truly work with people, on a daily basis, to make my fees affordable. I work with people, allowing credit cards and payment plans. They appreciate it a great deal that I try to customize the fee to the client.
Another reason people are afraid of lawyers is they think a lawyer might judge them. The truth of the matter is, I do not judge. I try to help you. I try to help you get the absolute best result possible in your case, regardless of your past.
That is another thing that comes up. People say, “Well, I have a prior DWI. I will never get out of this.” They think, “I have a lot of tickets. I have a lot of points. I will never get out of this. The judge is not going to give me a break.”
The truth of the matter is, as an attorney I am an advocate. I am the buffer. I am the filter between you and the judge, and you and the prosecutor. It is my responsibility to be a zealous advocate for you; and to put your best foot forward.
I will not judge you. I will make it my business to see to it that the prosecutor and judge see the best side of your case. This is to benefit you.
By Carl Spector