Don't Need a Criminal Law Attorney for a Misdemeanor? Think Again

Posted on: 30 December 2016


When most people commit a crime, there is no doubt they need to seek the legal counsel of a criminal law attorney. However, when faced with a misdemeanor charge, deciding whether to hire a defense lawyer or not, isn't an easy decision because most people consider these crimes as petty offenses whose convictions do not bear any severe repercussions.

Misdemeanors still carry grave future consequences for an individual if they get convicted. Thus before dismissing the option of hiring a criminal law attorney, here are some consequences you ought to consider.

Constitutional rights

Irrespective of the nature of the misdemeanor, your constitutional rights still apply in the matter. A criminal law attorney is essential in ensuring your rights are respected as well as informing you of the legal options you have in the misdemeanor case. Additionally, criminal law attorneys are great at evaluating crimes by conducting parallel investigations on the offense.  

A good criminal law attorney could get your charges dropped if their investigations find signs of foul play by the arresting officer or any other technicality such as coercion by the interrogating officer. Your sentence could also get reduced via reasonable arguments presented in court by a criminal law attorney on your behalf. Failure to hire a lawyer is a sure guarantee of getting convicted.

Police interrogation

During an interrogation for a misdemeanor, it is advisable to have your criminal law attorney present. Remember, anything you say in during an inquiry could further assist the authorities in building a strong case against you. A criminal law attorney can guide you through which question to answer and not to respond to during an interrogation, to ensure you do not compromise your 'innocent until proven guilty' status. Quite often people divulge information to the authorities during questioning that leads to their conviction. Thus, always make sure you have a lawyer present during an interrogation.

Future consequences of a misdemeanor conviction

Any conviction has the potential to cause problems in your life. A criminal law attorney can have the charges dropped probably based on a technicality or arguing out the case to prove you were not guilty of the misdemeanor. Remember a conviction is a permanent record that describes your character to anyone who runs a background check on you.

For instance, depending on the severity of the misdemeanor, an employer has the right to deny you employment if they think you are not trustworthy based on your criminal record. Additionally, a conviction can limit access to social services such as housing, loan financing as well as family rights.