The following list contains Frequently Asked Questions answered by Virginia criminal lawyer Karin Riley Porter. The answers are excerpted from an interview.

Well, the first thing that somebody needs to do is figure out what their objectives are. Also, it’s important to figure out what their budget is as well as how much the outcome of a particular case means to you in deciding what the budget constraint is going to be.

Then, it takes some legwork to research attorneys who best practice criminal defense in the particular jurisdiction you have been charged. Then, you need to call up and set up phone conferences with the attorneys. Attorneys usually provide some amount of time or free consultation at least over the phone or you can also request to have basic rate consultation with an attorney. Some are more willing than others to do that.

I do provide free consultations to people that want to talk to me about their case. I’m happy to provide them with an assessment of how I see their case stands and what they might expect. In addition, given the limited information I might have at that particular time, I could propose a set of strategies if I were to handle the case.

So, the same resources that I just discussed in the previous question can be used also to find the best criminal defense attorney particular to the needs in your case in Virginia. There are different sites that allow for ratings such as AVVO from people that have used the services of other attorneys so it is an invaluable resource.

Well, there is something to be said for you get what you pay for and it’s the same thing with criminal charges. Especially, when you value your future, your liberty, and your peace of mind. Taking the cheapest lawyer is not probably going to be the best option for you because you will not really be assured you have the best possible representation.

Now, just because an attorney is less expensive than another attorney, doesn’t mean that one attorney is less capable necessarily. But as a general rule, if somebody’s fees for particular cases are really low, it could mean that this attorney or his/her firm practices on a quantity versus quality kind of the representation. This means, they’re able to do a service for a very small fee because they take on four or five times the amount of cases that another attorney might take on. That could be the reason for the price disparity. So, the time and attention that one attorney pays on a case may be proportional to the fee.

There are many different ways that somebody could try to obtain counsel that fit for each particular purpose. There are certain websites that can be accessed for people to research attorneys for each field. There are Lawyers.com, AVVO, as well as individual websites. All of these sites provide biographical information about the attorneys involving their areas of practice.

Some of the sites, such as Google+, also provide reviews that can be beneficial to individuals looking for attorneys and who have never retained counsel before. Also, word of mouth from family or friends that have either have used attorneys in the past or know of someone that can recommend an attorney can also provide valuable information to someone who’s looking for an attorney.

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