A criminal defense attorney is the one who represents individuals charged with criminal cases. These lawyers generally work on their own as solo practitioners or they may also work as public defenders. Even though any lawyer can represent a defendant in court, a criminal defense lawyer is one who can offer his clients the experience gained through the daily practice of criminal defense law.
Qualifications of a criminal defense lawyer
To practice as a criminal defense attorney in Los Angeles or San Francisco or any other state for that matter, an individual should have graduated from an American Bar Association accredited law school and should have qualified their state’s bar exam. Clearing the bar exam makes a lawyer eligible to practice not just in state courts, but federal courts as well.
Any lawyer can take up a criminal defense case, but criminal defense lawyers are people with added qualifications. Majority of the criminal lawyers are people who had worked in a state or federal prosecutor’s office prior to starting defense practice. Others may have previously worked as public defenders before starting their private practice. Public defenders have the advantage of being exposed to all kinds of cases and therefore gain a lot of experience.
Private criminal defense lawyers
A large number of criminal defense attorneys prefer to practice on their own or along with one or two partners. Be it a criminal defense attorney in Los Angeles or Massachusetts, they usually run a general practice and will take up any kind of criminal case. Of late, criminal defense attorneys have started specializing in particular areas such as drug cases, driving under the influence cases and other major felonies like murder or robbery.
A few criminal defense attorneys also choose to work for huge law firms that work for commercial and business clients. Corporate clients charged for white collar crimes against them like money laundering and fraud are represented by these lawyers.
Public defenders are people who represent individuals who cannot afford their own lawyer. They are paid by the state, country or federal jurisdiction to operate out of a public defender office. Despite their huge caseloads, public defenders are extremely competent lawyers. Once the judge orders for a public defendant, it is up to the supervising attorney to assign the case within the office.
That was some information on criminal defense lawyers. For more information on the same, refer online legal resources.Google+