Certain decisions must be made quickly after an arrest, and choosing an attorney is one of them. But your selection of an attorney should not be a rash decision made out of desperation.
A quick internet search will reveal countless criminal defense attorneys, as will recommendations from co-workers, friends, and family members. However, above all else, you should make sure that you are getting an attorney who can help you with the specific criminal charge you are facing.
Consider the attorney’s experience and record of success
You want an attorney who has extensive experience combined with a record of successfully defending your specific type of case. You want to know the number of these criminal cases the attorney handles in an average year, and how many recent not-guilty verdicts in a jury trial the attorney has secured. Since your case is in Wisconsin, your attorney should also practice exclusively in Wisconsin.
Meet the attorney in person if possible, even if it involves a low-cost consultation to determine if you are confident they can represent you effectively. If you have the slightest doubt, you should continue your search. Do not just retain the first lawyer you meet out of desperation. Take the time you need to make a solid decision.
As you search, you will find many attorneys who practice in many areas of law. Be sure to choose a criminal defense attorney who focuses on your type of case. For example, if you are charged with drunk driving in Wisconsin, you need a successful OWI defense lawyer; if you are accused of a violent crime or a sex crime, you need an attorney who has taken on these types of cases and won.
For more on these matters, please see our overview of criminal defense in Wisconsin.