Five Reasons to Retain Private Criminal Counsel

By law, every person charged with a crime in the United States is guaranteed legal representation in court. If they cannot pay for their lawyer, the court will even pay for their lawyer so they can get that representation. While public defenders are generally competent at their jobs, there are still substantial reasons to consider getting a private lawyer instead of sticking with your court-appointed one. Here are five reasons you should consider getting a private lawyer in your criminal case: Continue reading “Five Reasons to Retain Private Criminal Counsel”

What is the Right to Remain Silent?

Plenty of people have heard of the right to remain silent in the context of American criminal law. Despite it being common knowledge, however, not everyone understands it, or what its implications are. So what exactly is the right to remain silent, and what happens if someone violates that right? Continue reading “What is the Right to Remain Silent?”

Don’t Let a Holiday Celebration Turn Into A DWI

November and December are supposed to be festive months for most people. The celebrations that happen in late Autumn and early Winter give people plenty of opportunity to celebrate with family… and also plenty of opportunities to drink and make grave mistakes. Thus, it is not all that surprising that there is no other time of year where more people drive while intoxicated (DWI) or drive under the influence (DUI) than during the holiday season. Continue reading “Don’t Let a Holiday Celebration Turn Into A DWI”

What is a Stop-and-Frisk Search?

If you live in New York, chances are you have heard about the police tactic of “stop-and-frisk” searches. These searches have been the subject of extensive controversy throughout the years, particularly in big cities where the practice is incredibly common. But what is a stop-and-frisk, exactly, and why do so many people get up in arms about them? Continue reading “What is a Stop-and-Frisk Search?”

Understanding Your Miranda Rights

“You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided to you by the court at no cost.” These are the famous Miranda rights, which almost everyone has heard of through popular media. But why do the police read you your Miranda rights when you get arrested, and what happens if they do not? Continue reading “Understanding Your Miranda Rights”

What is the Difference Between a Felony and a Misdemeanor?

In criminal law, most crimes are divided into one of two categories: felonies and misdemeanors. There are some major differences between the two types of crimes, both in terms of time served and the impact they could have on a convict’s life. So what is the difference between a felony and a misdemeanor, and why does it matter? Continue reading “What is the Difference Between a Felony and a Misdemeanor?”

The Complications of a Co-Defendant

If you have been arrested for allegedly committing a crime, you are already dealing with a complex and stressful situation. Even relatively simple cases with low-level charges can take months to resolve, especially if you choose to go to trial. However, just about any case can become substantially more complicated if you are also trying to defend yourself alongside a co-defendant. Here are just a few ways in which your legal defense could be made more difficult by the presence of a co-defendant: Continue reading “The Complications of a Co-Defendant”

What is the Reasonable Expectation of Privacy?

The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution states that no citizen shall be subject to an unreasonable search or seizure of their person or property without a warrant backed by probable cause. A key word in that statement, however, is what constitutes an “unreasonable” search or seizure. According to the Supreme Court, the answer has to do with whether someone had a reasonable expectation of privacy. But what exactly is the reasonable expectation of privacy, and when does it protect you from a search or seizure by law enforcement? Continue reading “What is the Reasonable Expectation of Privacy?”

Five Ways to Protect Your Rights During a Police Interrogation

There are few things more potentially stressful than being interrogated by the police. Even if they tell you that you are not being suspected of a crime, there is the fear that you will say something that the police will eventually use against you. That is why you should remember these things that you can do to protect your rights if you ever find yourself in a police interrogation: Continue reading “Five Ways to Protect Your Rights During a Police Interrogation”

What are NY’s Collateral Consequences and How Might They Affect Me?

Just about anyone who knows about criminal law knows that if you are convicted of a crime or plead to a crime, you will generally be punished in one of three ways: incarceration in a jail or prison, probation, or payment of a fine. Sometimes, you may be assigned community service, forced to attend a rehabilitation clinic, or you may be given another, more peculiar punishment. However, there are other potential consequences to a criminal conviction, known as collateral consequences, that you should be aware of before you take a plea deal. Continue reading “What are NY’s Collateral Consequences and How Might They Affect Me?”