Best Westminster Criminal Lawyers
Finding the Best Criminal Defense Lawyers in Westminster, California
If you or a loved one have been charged with a crime in Westminster, California, having an experienced criminal defense lawyer on your side can make all the difference. Criminal charges can carry steep fines, probation requirements, and even jail time, so you’ll want to find the best legal representation possible. There are many skilled criminal defense attorneys practicing in the Westminster area, but how do you go about picking the right one?
In this article, we’ll cover tips on choosing a great criminal lawyer in Westminster and highlight some of the top-rated and most experienced criminal defense attorneys in the city. Whether you’re facing misdemeanor or felony charges, these lawyers have the skills and knowledge to build the strongest possible defense for your case.
Do Your Research to Find Qualified Candidates
Your first step is to thoroughly research criminal defense lawyers operating in the Westminster area. Look for attorneys who specifically focus on criminal law, as opposed to general practice lawyers. You want someone who is well-versed in this field and deals with criminal cases on a regular basis.
Search online directories like Avvo.com and Superlawyers.com, which rate and review lawyers based on experience, ethics, and professionalism. You can filter search results by practice area to find Westminster criminal attorneys. Check each lawyer’s website to learn about their background, case results, and client reviews.
Don’t just look at the first page of Google results – you want to dig deeper to find experienced criminal defense lawyers who may not be experts at search engine optimization but have a strong reputation in the legal community. Expand your search outside of Westminster if needed to find the right attorney.
Look for Relevant Experience
Once you’ve identified some potential candidates, take a close look at their experience. The ideal lawyer will have extensive experience handling criminal cases similar to yours in Westminster courts.
For example, if you were charged with a white collar financial crime like embezzlement or fraud, you don’t want a lawyer whose background is limited to DUIs and drug possession charges. Find someone who regularly deals with complex financial crimes and understands strategies like plea bargains and deferred prosecution agreements.
Consider experience not just in Westminster, but handling cases at the state and even federal level. The more exposure your lawyer has to prosecutors and judges, the better their understanding of how to approach your defense.
Meet with Attorneys for Consultations
Narrow down your list and set up initial consultations with a few of the top contenders. Most criminal defense lawyers offer free consultations, and this is your opportunity to vet them in person. Come prepared with questions about their experience, case strategies, and fees. Pay attention to how well they listen and their responsiveness to your concerns.
A great lawyer will ask questions to understand the details of your charges, provide an honest assessment of your case, explain your options, and lay out their approach for building your defense. If an attorney makes guarantees or seems evasive, that’s a red flag. Look for someone who is compassionate yet realistic.
Understand Fees and Payment Options
During the consultation, discuss legal fees and potential costs. Rates and fee structures vary greatly between criminal defense attorneys. Some charge hourly rates while others have flat fees for different stages of a case. Get quotes from multiple lawyers before deciding.
Also ask about payment plans, as some lawyers allow you to pay in installments if you can’t afford the full fee upfront. If your financial situation is tight, some attorneys will work on a pro bono or sliding scale basis. There are also legal aid organizations that may be able to connect you with discounted representation if you qualify based on income.
Check Reviews and Disciplinary Records
Once you’ve met with lawyers face-to-face, do some additional due diligence by looking up client reviews and verifying disciplinary records. Reviews on Google or Avvo can give you valuable insight into an attorney’s responsiveness, communication skills, and legal capabilities.
You can look up any disciplinary sanctions through the State Bar of California. An attorney who is frequently disciplined or suspended from practicing law is one to avoid.
Trust Your Gut Instinct
Consider all the factors, but ultimately your decision may come down to a gut feeling. Which lawyer made you feel most comfortable and gave you confidence they could handle your case? The rapport you have with your attorney can impact how well you work together. Don’t ignore your instincts – if something felt off, keep looking for the right lawyer.
Top Criminal Defense Lawyers in Westminster, California
Now that you know how to evaluate criminal defense attorneys, let’s look at some of top-rated lawyers in the Westminster area:
With an office in Westminster, attorney Scott Ball is one of the most experienced local lawyers handling felony and misdemeanor criminal cases. For over 29 years, he has defended clients in state and federal courts on charges ranging from DUIs and domestic violence to sex crimes and drug offenses.
Ball is a certified criminal law specialist, recognized by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. He is known for his meticulous trial preparation and regularly attends seminars to stay up-to-date on criminal justice practices. Ball has successfully defended many high-profile cases and achieved not guilty verdicts for numerous clients over his career.
Bryan Kazarian is a former prosecutor turned criminal defense lawyer who has been practicing for over 15 years. Based in Westminster, he defends clients across Orange County and LA charged with all types of criminal offenses. He is a member of the California Attorneys for Criminal Justice and has received the Client Distinction Award from Martindale-Hubbell.
Kazarian takes an aggressive approach in safeguarding his clients’ rights and uncovering reasonable doubt. He has successfully defended serious felony cases involving charges of attempted murder, sex crimes, and gang violence. Kazarian is also experienced at getting charges reduced and dismissed through his strong negotiation skills.
Attorney Tung Pham is a Westminster-based lawyer who speaks English, Spanish, and Vietnamese. He handles misdemeanor and felony cases including DUIs, theft, domestic violence, and drug crimes. Pham is certified by the California State Bar as a Criminal Law Specialist.
Compassionate and knowledgeable, Pham works diligently to protect his clients’ futures. He is known for his masterful cross-examination skills and ability to identify weaknesses in the prosecution’s case. Pham has successfully defended many high-stakes cases and achieved not guilty verdicts for numerous clients over the past decade.
Other Top Options
Beyond these attorneys, other criminal defense lawyers to consider in Westminster include David Shapiro, Mick Hill, and Virginia Blumenthal. All have over 10+ years experience and offer free consultations for prospective clients.
For low income clients, reach out to legal aid organizations like Public Law Center and the Legal Aid Society of Orange County to request assistance with finding discounted representation.
Finding the Right Fit
The consequences of criminal charges are life-changing. By investing time to research and carefully select the right criminal defense lawyer in Westminster for your case, you can maximize your chances of the best possible outcome. Weigh all the factors covered above to find a great attorney who you can trust to fight for your freedom.