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Can a Lawyer Keep You Out of Jail?

Being investigated for a crime is scary, especially if there is a chance you could wind up with a prison sentence.

While there is no guarantee, one way to avoid this outcome is to work with a criminal defense attorney.

A criminal defense lawyer has the legal knowledge needed to give you the best chance of getting charges dropped. Moreover, an experienced attorney may be able to help you stay out of prison when you are facing criminal charges.

However, the nuances of whether or not a lawyer can keep you out of jail are a bit more complicated than just that. Let’s take a look at the answer to this question:

Can a Lawyer Keep You Out of Jail?

Old priston with it's bars locked up

When you are up against charges for a crime, you are typically dealing with serious issues that have major implications on your future. This means that every move you make has a major impact on the outcome of your trial.

The problem is that most laypeople don’t have a deep understanding of the law. When they try to defend themselves or take matters into their own hands, they run the risk of jeopardizing their trial/case.

In contrast, a defense lawyer has a deep understanding of the law. They have years of experience defending cases like yours against a prosecuting attorney. As a result, they are often able to help you get the best possible outcome in your trial. This is true even if you are facing serious consequences, such as jail time.

How Defense Attorneys Can Get You Out of Jail

In the event that you do wind up going to jail, that does not mean that all hope is lost. In fact, many lawyers can actually help negotiate a jail release on your behalf.

Many times, a lawyer can help you get out of jail by posting bail bonds (see: How do bail bonds work?), setting up releases, negotiating the price of your bond, and waving magistration. These can be game-changers when it comes to getting you out of jail and helping you secure a bright future, despite the outcome of your trial.

What Factors Can Affect Your Sentence

A black man with hands outside the bars of a prison cell

When it comes to understanding the effect that working with a defense lawyer can have on your sentence, it is important to know what other factors might come into play. A few common factors include:

  • Criminal history
  • The role someone played in the criminal offense
  • The circumstances under which the crime was committed
  • Whether someone was hurt or not
  • How cruel, destructive, or vindictive the crime was
  • The defendant’s own words

Let’s take a closer look at a few of these factors.

Your Criminal Past

If you have a criminal past, this is often a significant factor in what the outcome of your criminal case will be. Individuals who are first-time offenders vs. those with a lengthy criminal history are often less likely to face jail time or other serious consequences.

Now, that is not to say that you will definitely have to serve jail time if you have a criminal past. However, it does mean that you are even more likely to need the support of a strong defense attorney to help you avoid serious penalties.

Your Role in the Crime

Another factor that often plays a role in the outcome of a criminal trial is the circumstances of the crime.

Many judges look at whether the offender was an accessory or the main antagonist in the crime. In general, accessories in a criminal offense tend to be judged less harshly than the main perpetrator.

main perpetrator

The Circumstances

When judging a serious legal issue, such as date rape charges or child abuse charges, judges will often look at the circumstances.

Many judges will consider whether the offender was under serious duress or not. If it turns out that your crime was committed under great stress, your defense attorney may be able to secure you a lighter sentence.

Whether Someone was Hurt or Not

Some criminal charges, such as being in possession of child pornography, do not involve physically hurting someone.

Although these types of crimes can still have major repercussions, your criminal defense may be able to help you avoid jail time and secure lighter sentences. This is even more true if the crime does not cause a likelihood that someone will be hurt.

The Cruelty Involved

Criminal defense cases that involve a high level of cruelty or vindictiveness are often judged more harshly than those that do not.

This is because, in these cases, the intent behind the crime is often to harm. On the other hand, if you never had any intention of harming someone, you may be able to get away with a lighter sentence.

Your Own Words

Many people are familiar with the idea of pleading the fifth, and there is a good reason for this.

In criminal cases, the prosecuting attorney and their team may ask the defendant to make a statement on their own behalf. Whatever you say during this time can be used when considering your sentences. In addition, anything you say to a detective or police officer can also affect the outcome of your case (learn what happens if you don’t talk to a detective here).

Prisoner in prison with handcuff

What Sentences Can Criminal Charges Result In?

They can result in a number of different sentences, not just jail time. This is usually the case when the crime involved is a misdemeanor or minor crime.

A few of the other outcomes of a criminal case may be:

  • Community Service: this could be giving talks about the consequences of a person’s actions, working at a non-profit, participating in public service
  • Fines: payment to a local or state government, public project, or other government body
  • Restitution: payments made to the victim of a crime to help cover any damages to their person or property as a result of the crime

While there is never any guarantee, a great attorney may be able to help trade your jail time sentence for one of these sentences instead.

Why Hiring a Lawyer is Important in Criminal Cases

Hiring a criminal defense lawyer is important for providing you with a knowledgeable and experienced advocate in your case. However, this is not the only reason why you should hire a lawyer to help you in your criminal trial.

In addition to providing you with a solid defense that can help lead to reduced penalties, criminal defense lawyers can also serve as resources. They have numerous connections that can help you prove your case.

What is more, working with a lawyer in your case can lead to a more efficient trial. They know how the criminal justice system works and can help avoid delays to make sure the whole process runs smoothly.

All of these reasons combined make hiring a defense lawyer a critical decision in your case. It could be what makes or breaks the outcome of your trial.

Hire Blank Law, PC

So, can a criminal defense attorney help you avoid jail time? While there is no guarantee if you are facing a criminal charge, a defense attorney is often the answer to avoiding serious repercussions.

If you are up against criminal charges, you do not need to go at it alone. Attorney Nicole Blank Becker is a seasoned defense attorney who is equipped to help you fight your criminal case and come out on top.

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Fill out our online form here or all us at (248) 515-6583 to get in touch with her and receive a free consultation about how she can help you in your case or upcoming trial.

3150 Livernois Rd. Suite 126
Troy, MI 48083
(248) 515-6583
law@nicoleblankbecker.com

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