Best Orlando Criminal Lawyers
Orlando Criminal Lawyers – Your Legal Team in Orlando
Dealing with criminal charges in Orlando can be scary and overwhelming. But you don’t have to go through it alone. Orlando criminal lawyers can help guide you through the complex legal system and protect your rights every step of the way.
I wanted to write this article to help anyone searching for a criminal lawyer in Orlando. There’s a lot of confusing legal jargon out there, so I tried to break things down in simple terms. My goal is to explain what criminal lawyers do, talk about different types of criminal charges in Orlando, and give tips on how to find the right attorney for your situation.
What Do Criminal Lawyers Do?
Criminal lawyers help clients who have been accused of committing a crime. Their job is to represent their client in criminal court and build the strongest possible defense. Here are some of the key things criminal lawyers do:
- Meet with clients to understand the details of their case
- Research and identify any legal issues or violations
- Negotiate with prosecutors to get charges reduced or dismissed
- File motions to suppress evidence or statements
- Investigate the case and interview witnesses
- Represent clients in court hearings and at trial
- Present evidence and question witnesses
- Make arguments to defend the client
- Guide clients through the appeals process if convicted
Having an experienced criminal lawyer on your side can make all the difference. Their legal knowledge and courtroom skills are invaluable in getting charges dropped, reduced, or dismissed.
Types of Criminal Charges in Orlando
There are many different types of criminal offenses you can be charged with in Orlando. Some of the most common include:
Drug charges like possession, trafficking, distribution, and manufacturing illegal drugs. This includes marijuana, cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and prescription medications. Drug crimes can range from misdemeanors to serious felonies under Florida law.
Theft, robbery, burglary, shoplifting, and any crime involving stealing money, property, or assets from another person or business. There are degrees of theft charges based on the value of what was stolen.
Any crime involving violence or physical harm to another person. Examples include assault, battery, domestic violence, murder, manslaughter, and sex crimes.
White Collar Crimes
Non-violent crimes involving deceit, deception, or fraud for financial gain. Common white collar crimes are embezzlement, money laundering, tax evasion, forgery, and identity theft.
Criminal traffic violations like DUI, hit and run, reckless driving, driving with a suspended license, and vehicular manslaughter.
When you break the terms of your probation, parole, or community supervision, it’s considered a violation. Things like missing meetings, failed drug tests, or new arrests can violate probation.
As you can see, criminal law covers a wide range of offenses. An experienced Orlando criminal lawyer will know how to build the strongest defense no matter what you’ve been charged with.
Finding the Right Criminal Lawyer in Orlando
Not all criminal lawyers are equal. It’s important to do your research to find the best attorney for your specific situation in Orlando. Here are some tips:
- Look for a lawyer with experience handling your type of criminal charge
- Find someone familiar with Orlando courts and prosecutors
- Ask about their track record defending similar cases
- Choose a lawyer you feel comfortable talking to openly
- Find someone who clearly explains your options
- Consider reviews from past clients
- Ask about their rates and payment plans
Don’t rush into choosing an attorney. Take time to research and interview multiple lawyers before deciding. The right criminal lawyer can make all the difference in getting your charges reduced or dismissed.
What to Expect When Working with a Criminal Lawyer
If you hire a criminal lawyer in Orlando, here’s a basic overview of what you can expect:
You’ll meet with your lawyer for an initial consultation to discuss your charges. This is your chance to give them all the details so they understand your situation.
Next, your lawyer will start investigating the circumstances around your arrest and building your defense strategy. This may involve interviewing witnesses, collecting evidence, visiting the crime scene, and more.
As your case progresses, you’ll attend various court hearings and proceedings with your attorney. They will advise you on what to expect and how to present yourself in court.
Many criminal cases end with a plea bargain instead of trial. Your lawyer will negotiate with the prosecutor to get your charges reduced or dropped in exchange for a guilty plea.
If your case goes to trial, your lawyer will work hard preparing your defense strategy, filing motions, researching similar cases, and getting ready to argue before the judge and jury.
If you are convicted, your attorney will represent you at your sentencing hearing and advocate for the lightest penalty allowed by law.
Having a knowledgeable criminal lawyer guiding you through the process can give you peace of mind during a difficult time. Lean on their expertise and experience.
Common Defenses in Criminal Cases
There are many defenses a skilled criminal lawyer may use to get charges against you dropped or reduced. Some common defenses include:
- Invalid search – Evidence was obtained through an unlawful search, violating your 4th Amendment rights.
- Entrapment – You were induced by police to commit a crime you otherwise wouldn’t have.
- Self-defense – You acted reasonably to protect yourself from harm.
- Misidentification – You were mistakenly identified as the perpetrator.
- Intoxication – You were too impaired to form intent to commit the crime.
- Alibi – You have evidence proving you were elsewhere at the time.
- Mental defect – You have a mental disorder that prevented you from understanding your actions.
An experienced Orlando criminal lawyer will know how to apply the best defense strategies to your specific circumstances. Don’t hesitate to discuss all your options.
What to Look for in an Orlando Criminal Lawyer
If you’re searching for a criminal lawyer in the Orlando area, keep these tips in mind:
- Find someone experienced with your type of criminal charge
- Look for great communication skills and someone who listens
- Make sure they have a proven track record of positive case results
- Find someone passionate about defending the accused
- Choose a lawyer familiar with Orlando courts, judges, and prosecutors
- Pick someone available to respond quickly if you’re in custody
- Find a lawyer with fair and affordable rates
Don’t just choose the first lawyer you find online. Vet them thoroughly first. This is your future on the line.
Questions to Ask a Potential Orlando Criminal Lawyer
Here are some good questions to ask when interviewing criminal lawyers in Orlando:
- How long have you been practicing criminal law in Orlando?
- What percentage of your cases are similar to mine?
- What are some positive results you’ve gotten for past clients?
- Will you be the attorney actually representing me in court?
- How quickly do you return calls and emails?
- What will your legal fees be for my case?
- Are payment plans available?
- How often will we meet and discuss my case status?
- What are the risks if I go to trial vs take a plea deal?
Don’t feel rushed into making a decision. Take time to ask questions and understand their experience and track record defending cases like yours.
How Much Do Criminal Lawyers Cost in Orlando?
The cost to hire a criminal lawyer in Orlando can vary greatly depending on your charges, the lawyer’s experience, and other factors. Some general price ranges include:
- Misdemeanors – $1,000 – $5,000+
- Non-violent felonies – $5,000 – $15,000+
- Serious/violent felonies – $15,000 – $25,000+
- Federal crimes – $25,000+
More complex cases involving multiple charges or serious felonies cost more. Most lawyers offer payment plans to make hiring them more affordable.
Finding an Affordable Criminal Lawyer in Orlando
Just because you’re on a tight budget doesn’t mean you can’t get excellent legal representation. Here are some tips for finding an affordable criminal lawyer in Orlando:
- Look for lawyers who offer flat fees or discounted rates
- Search for lawyers who allow payment plans
- Ask if they offer free initial consultations
- Consider a public defender if you qualify based on income
- Check with local law schools for pro bono assistance
- Search for legal clinics that work on sliding fee scales
Be upfront about your budget constraints when interviewing lawyers. Many will work with you to make their services accessible.
Why Hiring a Lawyer is Important
Here are some key reasons why working with a criminal lawyer is so important:
- They know how to navigate the complex legal system
- They can get charges reduced or dismissed pre-trial
- They identify and challenge any police misconduct
- They conduct in-depth investigations prosecutors don’t
- They negotiate better plea deals with less serious penalties
- They have experience selecting juries and questioning witnesses
- They understand how judges think and know how to persuade them
- They know how to present evidence effectively
- They can help minimize sentences if convicted
Hiring a lawyer drastically improves your chances of a positive outcome. Don’t go it alone.
What to Do if You Can’t Afford a Lawyer
If you simply can’t afford a criminal lawyer in Orlando, there are still options available:
- Apply for a public defender if you qualify based on income level
- Contact local law schools to see if students can assist
- Search for pro bono legal assistance programs
- Look for free legal clinics in Orlando to get advice
- Ask criminal lawyers if they offer payment plans or will reduce fees
- Explain your financial hardship openly – lawyers may work with you