Because the stakes are so high when going to court, few relationships are stronger than the ones between a person who has been charged with a crime and their attorney. The fact that your freedom may be on the line not only when faced with a criminal charge but also because various penalties including long-term ramifications and financial. Having a strong and trusting relationship with your attorney will make the resolution of your case that much more important to your attorney. Not only is an open and honest relationship crucial from the beginning but also throughout the process so that a favorable resolution to your case is more likely.
What are your options if you are not happy with your present attorney?
Emails that are not returned, calls ignored; these are some of the signs that your lawyer is not giving you the best possible representation in advocating for your rights. Many times clients are never informed about the status of their case, what the next steps are and are virtually left in the dark. This makes dealing with criminal cases more difficult and if worse comes to worse, it is sometimes best to cut your loses and find a better lawyer. The one thing that you should remember is that you are always free to fire your lawyer because a lawyer’s job is to give the client the best representation possible from the beginning to the end and if a client feels like he or she is not getting the best representation, they always have the option to find an attorney who can.
There are certain ways that you must handle issues like this to ensure that your defense is not put into jeopardy. Normally, if a case is fairly new, the risk of problems stemming from changing lawyers is less of a risk. As an example, if you wait until the eve of trial to get a new lawyer, the new lawyer may find it difficult to mount a strong defense in time and the result may be unfavorable. It is in your best interest to voice any dissatisfaction with your attorney as soon as possible so that your new attorney has plenty of time to prepare before court.
How do I go about changing lawyers?
It is fairly easy to get a new attorney by just visiting with another lawyer and explaining your case. When you find an attorney you like, he will only need to prepare a “Substitution of Attorney” form then, your new lawyer will collect all the case information and file the form with the court.