Factors That Help Determine the Cost of a Private Defense Attorney

If you’re charged with a crime, you’ll want someone to represent you in court. You could just go with the public defender, but you may want someone more invested in your case, too. What does it cost to hire a private criminal defense attorney? There are a lot of factors to take into consideration.

How Complex Is Your Case?

If you are facing a felony, you are facing a greater penalty, which will require more from your lawyer. This could make your final bill higher. If you are facing a misdemeanor, you may not have as many court appearances and the lawyer may not have to spend as much time preparing to fight your case. This could make your final bill lower.

Is Travel Involved?

If you insist on having the most sought-after attorney, and he practices a few hours away from the city where your case is being tried, you might be responsible for travel costs. Also, keep in mind there are some areas in which attorneys are in higher demand, so they charge more, and that’s simply because of your geographic location.

Does the Attorney Have Experience?

Hourly rates often coincide with the amount of experience a criminal defense attorney has. For example, an attorney with two years of experience may charge significantly less than one with decades of experience under his belt. The less-experienced attorney is looking to gain that experience by offering his or her services at a more affordable rate.

How Does an Attorney Bill?

Most criminal defense lawyers won’t bill on a contingency basis, though it’s something you can ask your attorney about anyway. In most situations, you’ll encounter either hourly billing or case billing.

  • Hourly – One of the biggest advantages of hourly billing is if your case is pretty straight forward and can be concluded easily, you won’t end up paying as much. It’s possible that in addition to the hourly fee, you’ll be asked to pay for subpoena fees, copy fees, etc., though some lawyers roll that into the hourly rate.
  • Case – If you are charged by the case, you’ll know your fixed fee before the lawyer does any work. This is beneficial because you’ll already know exactly what your case will cost. If the case gets complicated and takes a long time to settle, this could be the most financially beneficial.

Contact Your Lawyer Today

When you’re facing a criminal charge, you need someone by your side who knows what they’re doing. Contact a criminal defense lawyer in Rockville, MD today for help with your case.

Thanks to the Law Office of Daniel J. Wright for their insight into criminal law and how to determine the cost of a lawyer.