Best Criminal Defense Lawyers Fort Worth, TX Of 2024 – Forbes

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When you are accused of a crime in the United States, the state or federal government must prove that you committed it beyond a reasonable doubt. This means that you can be prosecuted in a trial that is judged by a jury of your peers.

While that description is rather simple, the legal process is reasonably complex. There are millions of laws and thousands of relevant procedures that affect the criminal justice process. Criminal defense lawyers are trained to navigate this process, representing defendants so that they have a fair chance of proving their innocence when facing criminal charges.

Public Defender vs. Private Criminal Attorney

In Texas, you have the right to an attorney as soon as you are charged with a crime. And if you are indigent, you have the right to be represented by a public defender if you have been charged with a felony or a Class A or B misdemeanor, are a juvenile or are directly appealing a case.

Public defenders are attorneys who are paid by the state. In contrast, the defendant pays for a private criminal defense attorney. Private attorneys generally have more resources at their disposal, and many have impressive records of success. However, all defense attorneys are knowledgeable and qualified to defend their clients in court.

Should You Represent Yourself in a Criminal Case?

While every citizen has the right to represent themselves in court, it is highly discouraged. Even experienced attorneys must research subtle aspects of the law regularly, and they usually have legal teams to assist them. Without legal training, you are likely to make mistakes that will harm your case.

Typically, you should only represent yourself when the cost of losing your case is less than the cost of an attorney. Traffic tickets and other very minor offenses fall into this category. When you represent yourself in such a case, the judge might be willing to give you some leeway.

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