Choosing the right criminal defense attorney can affect a person’s life for many years. Even seemingly minor charges may have serious repercussions. Many people accused of a crime have never been accused before, and will not know what to do. Whether accused of a misdemeanor or felony, the first step is to contact an Illinois criminal defense lawyer. Dolan Law, PC handles many types of defense cases, from the relatively straightforward to the most complex criminal defense cases.
Illinois law divides crimes into three general categories. Felonies are serious crimes such as most larger-scale illegal drug offenses, aggravated DUI, rape, murder, and arson. A person convicted of one of these crimes may be sentenced to a prison term ranging between one year and life, and may be force to pay a substantial fine, depending on the severity of the crime. As Chicago criminal defense attorneys know all too well, a person convicted of a felony loses the right to vote and typically faces serious employment problems. The next level of crime is a misdemeanor, which includes DUI, battery, theft, criminal trespass, and minor cannabis offenses. A person convicted of a misdemeanor may be sentenced to a prison term of 0-364 days and be forced to pay a fine up to $2500. The last level of crime is the petty offense, which includes parking tickets and minor traffic offenses. A person convicted of a petty offense may be forced to pay a fine of up to $500.
Many criminal cases are resolved by a plea bargain. A plea bargain is simply an agreement, negotiated with the help of a criminal defense attorney, between a prosecutor and the defendant. The agreement must be entered by a Judge. In a plea bargain, or plea deal, the defendant agrees to plead guilty to a lesser crime and accept a specific punishment. While knowledge of the law is important for a criminal defense attorney negotiating a plea deal, experience is more important. In cases that are not resolved by a plea deal, the government can either dismiss the charges or attempt to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt at trial.
It is imperative that the accused contact an experienced Chicago criminal lawyer as soon as possible. Many people do not fully understand the rights to which they are entitled, and may even waive those rights without fully understanding the consequences. Chicago criminal defense attorneys can protect those rights at every stage of a criminal proceeding.
If you or a loved one is facing criminal allegations, you need an attorney who can help you resolve the legal issue at hand. At Dolan Law, PC, we provide comprehensive counsel in a wide array of legal fields. No case is too complex for us to handle. Contact our Chicago-based law firm online or call our lawyers at [ln::phone] to schedule a consultation today.