Waukegan, Illinois, Criminal Law Blog

10 Reasons You Absolutely Need to Hire a Criminal Defense Lawyer

While minor legal violations, such as speeding or parking tickets, may be manageable on your own, what do you do when you are facing a more serious offense, such as a DUI, vehicular injury, or other severe criminal charge?  These are instances when hiring a criminal defense attorney isn’t just helpful, but absolutely necessary.


  • They Know the Law: On your own, you could spend years trying to fully understand the laws that affect your case.  A licensed attorney has invested years of education and experience in learning those laws, how they’ve changed, and how best to protect you when you get to the courtroom.  Use your attorney’s education as an advantage, as he or she is better prepared than you on your own.  
  • They Are Familiar With Legal Documents: In any legal case, you will probably face a mountainous amount of paperwork, court documents, deadlines, and the like.  Defense attorneys are well versed in legal procedures and paperwork that come with a criminal case.  An attorney can advise you on proper document filing and plea-bargaining, remind you of upcoming deadlines, and generally save you A LOT of time and trouble.
  • You Have A Lot to Lose: When you are facing criminal charges, the court or the prosecutor can ask for heavy jail time, come after your personal assets, or demand parole/probation terms that can affect your employment status, and your life.  Attorneys bring a strong level of expertise to court battles to help keep you living your life as normal as possible.
  • They Reduce Penalties: Even minor criminal violations can result in sentences that include house arrest, jail time, or, at the very least, a possible criminal record.  A defense attorney is able to negotiate with prosecution to seek out options like alternative sentencing, reduce penalties you face or even get charges dropped.
  • They Attain Plea Bargains and Achieve Settlements: Often in a criminal case, a settlement or plea bargain will be your best option.  Lawyers with experience in settlements and plea-bargaining can lead you through the legal negotiation process and correspond with prosecuting attorneys on your behalf, likely sparing you from severe penalties and fines.
  • They Know the Prosecutors: Local defense attorneys are often familiar with the prosecutors and judges that you will be dealing with in a criminal case.  A lawyer will know about predispositions or frailties associated with you legal opponents from having dealt with them first-hand; even if an attorney has not dealt directly with a particular judge or prosecutor, he or she will be on guard against unsuitable conviction attempts and unfair settlement offers.
  • They Have Command of the Evidence: While the majority of law enforcement is honest and fair, you must always be on the lookout for evidence tampering or other legal deceit.  Fallacies like inaccurate police reports or aggrandized witness testimony are dangers that defense attorneys look out for and know how to protect you against.  Experienced lawyers know how to flesh out and defend against weak or unethical prosecution, such as unreliable or inconsistent testimonies.
  • They Give You A Network of Witnesses: An attorney will have knowledge of and access to key figures who will apply to your case and who would be otherwise unavailable to you; these can include private investigators, doctors, specialists and skilled witnesses that are relevant to your particular case.  Defense lawyers will have a network of such professionals at their disposal to help build you your strongest case.
  • They Can Keep Your Record Clean: Have you thought about how criminal charges might affect your career, or even your life, after the case is over?  Finding future employment and advancing your career, as well as facing social humiliation and embarrassment, are just a few issues that someone with a criminal record may be facing.  A defense attorney can save you from these fears, if not by dismissal of all charges, then by eventually expunging or removing your conviction from your professional record.
  • Free Consultations:  Legitimate and ethical defense attorneys will always offer a free consultation at the start, making you aware of their fees, payment process, retainers, etc.  They will also allow you to consider all options available as they discuss the potential of your case with you.  For best results, you should schedule a free consultation with a professional   defense attorney as soon as possible.

If you are facing criminal charges, you may have a long and very serious road ahead of you.  Just as you would never battle a terminal illness without an expert medical physician, it is unwise to face a criminal courtroom without a trained and experienced legal expert in your corner.  Be sure to get in touch with Jed Stone today and begin the process of hiring a legal professional that is right for you.