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Criminal Lawyers Defined

Criminal lawyers are also known as defense lawyers. Their main duty is to represent those individuals or companies that are charged with criminal acts and frauds. Below are some useful information about the life and work of defense lawyers.

Educational background

All criminal lawyers have finished a degree in law and have passed the law bar examination. Though it is not required by the law, some of them have taken and passed the National Board of Legal Specialty Certification (NBLSC). This is under the accreditation of the National Board of Trial Advocacy.

Job description of criminal lawyers

The scope of the work of defense lawyers is very varied. Apart from interviewing the clients or the so-called attorney-client privilege, they are to propose drafts for plea bargain agreements, bail bond hearings, and make an appeal after a conviction. The toughest part of the job is knowing the guilt of the client yet represent him on court and create a strategy for their client’s acquittal.

Skills of criminal lawyers

Since they will be working most of their time in front of the judge and the jury, they must have an excellent command in verbal and written language. They must be able to articulate well and be convincing. It is their task to persuade the members of the jury to acquit their clients or at least give a light sentence. Criminal lawyers must also possess an analytical thinking and strategize on how to defend their clients who are charged with criminal acts.

It also pays to have a high emotional quotient and relate to their clients. Those people who commit crimes usually have poor social interpersonal skills.

Work environment

Unlike corporate lawyers, criminal lawyers visit various and oftentimes, dangerous places so as to get information about the case they are handling. Some of them work in government agencies. They go to hospitals, prisons, courts, and other areas to meet their clients.

Most of them begin their careers in government agencies. They represent those individuals who cannot afford to hire the services of private lawyers, and they are referred to as public defenders. The salaries they receive from the government are not as high compared to those employed by law firms. But criminal lawyers who work for high-profile individuals or organizations receive lucrative compensation package.

More and more lawyers are getting interested in specializing in the field of criminal law. Jobs are available for them as the number of crime rates have drastically increased over the past 30 years.

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