Most of the time, even just being charged with a criminal offense can put you under a lot of stress. Such scenarios can negatively influence the course of your life forever.
If you’re in business, you could see your establishment fall apart in front of your eyes. Criminal charges will inhibit your business from selling, manufacturing, importing, or transporting specific goods. So, what are the precautions you can take to prevent being a victim of such criminal charges? Most importantly, what can happen to your finances in such cases? We will discuss all these things in the following paragraphs.
Criminal Charges and Finances – What You Should Know
Are you aware of how to proceed if criminal charges are being brought against you? Well, here are some things that you can do.
Know the Ever-Changing Law
Knowing the law is the best prevention path you can follow when you want to avoid criminal charges. The tricky part when trying to get a good grasp of state and federal laws is that these change on a regular basis. Both state and federal agencies change and adapt the laws and the applicable sanctions for criminal offenses. Laws that were protecting you a year ago can affect you today.
Fun fact of the day: nobody in the U.S. is really able to tell if they have ever actually broken the law. Also, none of the competent bodies in the U.S. has ever been able to tell exactly the number of criminal offenses at any given time. The bad news is, you could be one of those unlawful citizens yourself.
Even when you think you haven’t broken the law, there is a chance you might have. But, you may not know it. The rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution are not as secure as you might think.
The law is there to protect you. However, it can destroy your:
- squeaky-clean criminal record
Being charged with a crime is the last thing you can control. Officers can gather evidence and have you charged with a crime that you may not even be aware that you committed.
Hire the Best Attorneys You Can Find
After you’re convicted of a crime, the first step is to figure out how to protect yourself and your assets. The best way to do that is by finding a reliable criminal defense attorney. Relying on public defendants might be impossible, depending on your financial status. Besides, in most cases, public defendants offer services that are less professional and accurate than those of paid attorneys.
The biggest service you can do for yourself is not speaking to law enforcement or investigators until you find an attorney you can trust. You’ll want to find the most experienced, aggressive, and reliable professionals out there. Only they can truly protect you and your assets.
A simple criminal charge might result in ending up in jail and losing your job. Depending on the prejudice law enforcement says you have caused, you could end up losing most of your assets. Money might even be the main concern that is preventing you from hiring experienced attorneys. If so, please be aware that some law firms offer little or no money down services to all of their clients.
The good news is if you haven’t been charged with a crime yet, a team of experienced lawyers can help you prevent this from happening. The trick here is to work with lawyers before the filing of charges.
Criminal Charges and Your Money
This is where the issue becomes stringent. How much does being charged with a crime cost?
The cheapest option is having a public defender represent you in court. However, as attractive the idea might sound, this isn’t often recommended. More frequently than not, getting a public defender will guarantee low-quality services and poor results in court.
Besides, getting a public defender is possible:
- only after you have been charged with a crime
- only if you meet some very specific requirements
If you have some money in your bank account, you may not be able to receive one. For instance, a professional San Diego based criminal defense attorney claims you can be represented by a public defender only if you have a yearly income of less than 125% of the federal poverty level.
Regardless, a private attorney is often your best option in these scenarios.
While this will cost you some money, in some cases it’s not as much as people may think. On the flip side, you’ll likely have a significantly higher chance of clearing your charges. In the end, a private criminal defense attorney will diminish the overall strain a similar charge can put on your finances.
Criminal Charges and Your Employment
A major prejudice people have when being charged with crimes is that they’ll become unemployable. While there are some sectors and fields that are more stringent when it comes to criminal charges, there are some exceptions. This means your finances won’t have to suffer too much after similar charges, unlike what people seem to think.
The exceptions employers look at when you’re interviewing:
- The disposition of the case.
- The nature of the crime. Depending on the nature of the crime, employers might be unable to check the records for longer than seven years back.
- The time that has passed since the crime was committed. If a crime has been committed 15-20 years previously to the job application time, the employer is unlikely to take into consideration your conviction, especially if you were a teenager at the time of the crime.
What To Do If You Have Criminal Charges
Although criminal charges can damage your career and impact your financial status, this can happen only if you don’t take adequate action, and at the right time. With this in mind, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a legal adviser. As soon as you find out about your charges, contact the best lawyers and attorneys in your area.
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AUTHOR LaTia Longuemire
My name is LaTia Longuemire. I enjoy writing, singing, and cooking in my spare time. My passion is helping others. At this stage in my lifetime, I'm primarily focused on my children. They are everything that keeps my world spinning.