Those that have been charged with a crime will need an effective criminal defense lawyer. While there are qualified public defenders capable of decent representation, you do not want merely decent representation. The outcome of a judgment can have life altering consequences for the person who is charged. This is why it is of paramount important to select the appropriate criminal defense lawyer.
An appropriate selection, however, does not mean you merely open up the local phone directory or perform a cursory search online and base a selection on the advertisement you come across. To reiterate, there will be life altering consequences which can occur when a negative judgment is issued. The way to avoid this would be to hire an attorney that is intimately capable of providing you with the best available representation. In order to acquire such representation, you will need to follow a few established steps for making sure you are working with a criminal defense lawyer that will be effective.
The most obvious - yet often overlooked - attribute you will need to seek out is a criminal defense lawyer that is a specialist in the area of criminal defense you require representation. Not all crimes are the same and this means different approaches are required to effectively perform the proper representation. Matching your unique situation with an attorney that has specific experience and expertise in the crime you are charged with is a must.
You also need to work with a criminal defense lawyer that has your needs in mind. You definitely do not want to work with a lawyer that is not representing you in the appropriate manner. For example, you do not want to plea bargain, you do not want to work with a lawyer that is seemingly trying to force you into such a direction. This would not be to the benefit of anyone involved.
That said you do have to understand that the attorney has more expertise than you in such matters. In some instances, it would be best to follow along with the suggestion of your attorney provided the attorney has explained why his approach is the most advisable.
On the other hand, you do not want to work with an attorney that will only "yes" you on all your requests because this could lead to a disastrous legal outcome. Such representation really is not representation and attorneys with this attitude are best avoided.
Obviously, an attorney must be compensated for his time and duty. Criminal defense representation can potentially be very costly. However, there is no reason to assume you will be limited to inflexible and expensive payment options. There are highly talented criminal defense attorneys who can offer representation with an affordable payment structure. Seeking out such attorneys is highly advised if costs are a concern of yours.
Ultimately, you will want to work with the best criminal defense lawyer you can hire. The situation is just too serious and dire to work with a lawyer that cannot provide you with the absolute best help for your case.