Criminal Law is a broad subject that encompasses all laws within the United States that are related to crime. While state laws will vary as one moves from region to region, federal criminal law is consistent across state lines. Criminal defense law refers to the rights and responsibilities that are afforded to a person in the event that a crime is committed, as well as possible consequences and repercussions.

What is a Criminal Defense Lawyer?

If a person is charged with a crime, it is the job of the person’s attorney to provide the client with an understanding of rights and options moving forward, to inform the client of the protections offered under the US Constitution, and to defend the client in a court of law. Criminal defense lawyers are primarily private practice lawyers, although public defenders are provided for those charged with a crime in the case that the person cannot afford a private attorney.

Do I Need a Criminal Defense Lawyer?

If you have been charged with a crime, it is probably within your best interest to retain legal counsel. A lawyer can help you to understand different legal terms—such as a plea bargain, can negotiate deals with prosecutors, and can often get you a lesser sentence that you would have received otherwise. If you’ve committed a crime where jail or prison time is likely, retaining a lawyer is especially important.