Being convicted of a crime does not mean that your case has to end. It may be possible to appeal your conviction and if successful, you could avoid the sentence that was imposed as well as other consequences that go along with it. Appealing a conviction should be left in the hands of an experienced criminal attorney who is knowledgeable of the appellate process. You should never feel rushed to hire an attorney with such a potentially life-changing decision at stake. Most attorneys offer a free initial consultation where you can confidentially discuss the details of your case, ask questions, and get to know one another better. This process should help you determine your comfort level with the attorney and whether or not they are the best fit for your case.
You can’t beat experience
When you are dealing with a post-conviction appeal there is simply no substitute for experience. Dealing with an appeal can be an extremely complex matter within the legal system. An attorney who has a history of success handling appeals cases has the experience necessary to navigate the legal process and explain their steps to you along the way clearly and concisely.
Experience in the region
While experience handling appeals is important, experience with the specific court your appeal is being heard can also be beneficial. Each district and division has different justices and clerks and each can bring their own unique opinions and ideas to the table. As a result, it is helpful to work with an attorney who understands your local appellate court because they will be more comfortable with the court and its procedures and this knowledge could have a positive impact on your case.
You need a lawyer who can dedicate their time
If you are visiting with an attorney as part of an initial consultation you should always ask them what their current case load is like so that you have a better understanding of the time they have available to dedicate themselves to your case. If an attorney is extremely busy with other cases, or intends to hand the case off to someone else within the firm, they may not be a good fit to represent you. A significant benefit of hiring an experienced attorney to handle your case is that they have the time, energy, and resources available to dedicate to your case. If they do not, you probably should not hire them as representation.
The time an attorney has to dedicate to a case can impact the quality of your defense. Do not settle for anything less than you deserve. The appeals process involves many steps and you need an attorney who can make sure each step of that process is handled appropriately.
An attorney with proven results
Proven results go hand-in-hand with experience. Do not hesitate to ask your attorney what their previous experience is in terms of successful appeals. In addition, you may ask whether or not the attorney is rated through services such as AVVO.com or Lawyers.com. Among the most trusted lawyer rating sites on the internet, ratings of attorneys found on these websites can give you greater transparency into what they are like to work with and what their client reviews have typically been. Before hiring an attorney you may wish to search for them on these sites to determine their ratings from clients and peers alike.
For example, the Law Office of Gregory W. Fox has an 8.2 out of 10 on AVVO and a perfect 5 star rating from clients.
Appeals are not guaranteed
When it comes to appeals there is simply no guarantee that it will be successful. As a result, if you meet with an attorney who claims a guarantee of success you should probably not trust them. It is virtually impossible to predict if your appeal will be granted and it is also against the law to offer any kind of guarantee to clients that states that.
Appeals are very complex and many things can occur throughout the legal process. Predicting a successful appeal is unethical and should be an automatic disqualification for any attorney you are considering hiring. You owe it to yourself to hire an attorney who is honest from the start.
Pricing and fees
When selecting the appropriate attorney to represent your case it is perfectly understandable that fees and pricing would be a factor in your decision. Appeals are handled differently than criminal cases so it is important that you discuss fees and pricing with your potential attorney before hiring them. Make sure that you have a clear understanding of what you will be paying and if necessary you can ask for a written agreement that lists these costs.
Contact Fresno appeals attorney
If you or a loved one is considering filing an appeal you should contact an experienced appeals attorney as soon as possible. Call us today at (559) 222-5800 to schedule your free initial consultation. In most instances an appointment can be scheduled for the same day.