Below are some initial questions many clients have when they first contact Robert E. Battle, P.C.. The questions below may address many initial concerns you may have. If you don’t find the answers here, you should contact us for answers to questions specific to your case. The consultation is free.
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The State has provided me with a free attorney. Why should I hire one?
Virginia has some of the weakest compensation for court-appointed defense attorneys, offering them fees of just a few hundred dollars per case. For instance, an attorney that represents a client that is facing twenty years in jail has his payments capped out at just over $1000. This can cause them to encourage their clients to plead out if it looks like the case is going to take awhile. Although one of the better aspects of our justice system is that those that can't afford legal assistance are provided a free lawyer, the saying "You Get What You Pay For" certainly applies here.
When should I have an attorney present with me?
You should make arrangements to have an attorney present at the earliest possible opportunity. You should say nothing until your attorney arrives, regardless of whether you bear responsibility for a crime or not. If you are unable to get in touch with your regular attorney, request a court appointed attorney to speak on your behalf until you can make contact with your preferred counsel.
The police officers want me to sign some forms. What should I do?
DO NOT SIGN ANYTHING without your lawyer present. EVER.