In a federal criminal appeal case, your future is in your lawyer’s hands
If you have been convicted of a federal crime, you may wish to appeal your conviction. Before you proceed, it’s important to choose the right attorney to represent you. Selecting a lawyer can be challenging, especially when you’re facing something as serious as a federal criminal conviction. How do you know which lawyer to choose? What should you look for?
At Broden & Mickelsen, we know how overwhelmed clients feel when they are considering a federal criminal appeal. As with any overwhelming task, taking things step by step often helps make the process more manageable and less intimidating.
Do You Need a Lawyer?
The first step is to determine if you need a lawyer in the first place. In a case involving a federal criminal conviction, this is an easy answer – yes, you most certainly do.
Although you have the right to represent yourself in court, the court will hold you to the same standards as any lawyer. Federal appeals cases are unlike cases at the trial level. They are governed by complex, exacting rules of evidence and procedure. Attempting to act as your own lawyer is likely to be a frustrating and unproductive experience.
Does Your Lawyer Handle Federal Appeals Cases?
If you have been convicted of a federal offense, you almost certainly need the help and advice of an experienced federal appeals lawyer, even if you had a lawyer in your original case. Not all criminal defense lawyers handle appeals. To increase your chances of success, you must work with a criminal defense lawyer who regularly handles appellate cases in federal court.
What’s Important to You in a Lawyer?
In a federal criminal appeal case, your future is in your lawyer’s hands. When your freedom is on the line, you need a lawyer who possesses certain qualities. For example, your lawyer should be a good communicator and someone who is available when you need to ask a question or express a concern. Your lawyer should also be a seasoned litigator who knows the law. Prioritize the qualities that appeal to you, and make sure your lawyer has the skill set you need.
When You’re Ready to Choose a Lawyer…
Once you have determined the type of lawyer you need, you’re ready to choose one. Here are some points to consider:
- Search in the right places. There are several ways to find a reputable criminal defense lawyer. If you have a good rapport with your original defense lawyer, you can ask for a referral. You can also search the state bar’s website for a list of lawyers who practice in the area of federal criminal defense.
- Get information up front. Your lawyer should thoroughly explain how fees are charged and when you will receive billing statements. Be careful about working with someone who asks for a significant amount of money up front, especially if the lawyer does not handle the trial portion of a case.
- Write your questions down before your initial meeting. Meeting with a lawyer can be intimidating, especially when you are discussing something as important as a federal appeal. Most people tend to forget things when they’re nervous. It helps to write your questions down prior to your meeting, so you can refer back to them as you discuss your case with your lawyer.
Call Today to Schedule Your Consultation
If you’re facing a federal criminal appeal, you need lawyers who devote a significant portion of their practice to cases like yours. Contact us today to schedule a confidential consultation.
Broden & Mickelsen, LLP
2600 State St Dallas, Texas 75204
Main Phone: (214) 720-9552