Hiring a criminal attorney can feel like a big thing to do, and that's before considering if you might want to look into felony attorneys instead. If you're not sure whether you should go the extra mile and consult with felony attorneys, here are some things to think about.
What Are the Allegations?
The potential charges tend to be the biggest thing that dictates whether you'll want to talk with felony attorneys. American law breaks crimes into three sets. At the low end of alleged crimes, an infraction, a conviction usually entails no jail time. You might be fined, but only the sternest judges will even consider something like a weekend of incarceration for a defendant. In this instance, speaking with felony attorneys is almost certainly overkill.
The second tier involved misdemeanors. Criminal penalties in this tier range from 5 days to one year. Most law firms can handle these kinds of cases, but you might want to speak with a felony attorney if you're worried there may be additional criminal exposure. Sometimes prosecutors threaten felony charges on what are fundamentally misdemeanor cases to spook defendants into pleading guilty to lower charges.
As you may have guessed, the third tier is the felony. Felonies start at Class E with convictions resulting in 1–5 years of prison time. A Class A felony may result in life in prison or execution. Especially if you're facing a higher felony, it's wise to work with an attorney who specializes in that level of cases.
Some convictions entail sanctions beyond prison time. The classic example of a sanction is when a court orders someone to register as a sex offender. Similarly, some gun-related crimes may lead to sanctions that require you to surrender all of your firearms. There are also tax and financial crime convictions that may lead to sanctions preventing you from holding a position of public or fiduciary trust in the future.
Normally, there are only two ways to beat sanctions. First, you might win at trial or get the judge to dismiss the charges. Second, you may plead guilty to a misdemeanor that doesn't entail sanctions.
Many cases start as misdemeanors until a prosecutor examines aggravating circumstances. A criminal assault involving a protected class is a common example. That might escalate into a hate crime case. Similar issues can arise from convictions for alcohol-involved vehicular homicides, repeat offenses, and crimes against children or the elderly. If you need further legal protection, it's worth reaching out to felony lawyers to learn more.Share
6 January 2021
My name is Laura, and I am an attorney specializing in helping clients leave violent marriages. The law can help victims be safe, but many potential clients cannot afford legal services and may be afraid to pursue divorce. They may not be aware of services that have been created to keep them hidden from violent ex-partners and to help them be awarded assets in a divorce so they can provide for themselves and their families. I hope to raise awareness of these issues as well as help direct people in danger to facilities where they can receive guidance and financial assistance.