Communicating with Your Criminal Defense Attorney

Lawyer speaking to client. Visual concept for legal blog

When you are facing criminal charges, effective communication with your criminal defense lawyer is crucial to ensure a successful result. Your lawyer will handle the bulk of your criminal case, but we need your help to mount an effective defense. Clear and effective attorney client communication with your criminal defense attorney helps ensure a favorable outcome.

Many people feel intimidated or even embarrassed when talking to a lawyer, especially when making the first call and during their initial meeting. But rest assured, your criminal defense lawyer is on your side and will not judge you. We are here to help, and clear and effective communication is the key to developing a strong defense that will lead to successful results.

Attorney-Client Communications Are Legally Privileged

Trust, and clear and honest communication between a lawyer and his client are the foundation of a successful attorney-client relationship. When you have been accused of a crime, you need to feel comfortable discussing every element of your case with your attorney, even if it feels embarrassing or you are concerned that what you say could be incriminating. Being honest and forthright in communications with your lawyer ensures he knows everything he needs to about your case so he fully understands your situation and can prepare the most effective defense.

Anything you discuss with your lawyer is legally privileged. As the client, the attorney-client privilege is yours to assert. You can decide whether you want to share something you discussed with your lawyer with anyone else. Besides a few very limited exceptions, your lawyer cannot talk about anything you discussed with him. Attorney-client conversations are legally privileged, and no one, not even the judge, can ask about those discussions.

The Importance of Transparency in Attorney-Client Communications

As the client, your lawyer relies on you to provide complete and accurate information. Omitting a seemingly minor detail could have a significant impact on the outcome of your case. When a client does not tell their lawyer an important piece of information, it creates a challenging situation, especially if the first time the lawyer learns about the information is during the trial. By telling your lawyer everything, he can create a defense strategy that accounts for every detail of your case, even aspects that might seem unfavorable.

6 Tips for Effective Attorney-Client Communication

To prepare the strongest defense, be prepared to discuss your case in detail with your lawyer. Here are some tips to help you prepare for the conversation with your criminal defense attorney.

  1. Tell your story chronologically. Speak slowly and try to tell your story from start to finish. Jumping around in the timeline will make it more difficult for your lawyer to fully understand what happened and when.
  2. Include as much detail as possible. A seemingly insignificant detail could have a profound impact on your case.
  3. Tell your lawyer everything. Share as much information as possible, even if it is embarrassing or you think it could be incriminating. Conversations with your lawyer are covered by the attorney-client privilege. Your lawyer will not judge you and cannot share information with law enforcement or anyone else who could charge you with a crime.
  4. Be as calm and rational as possible. Being charged with a crime is a stressful situation. But letting your emotions get the best of you can lead to impulsive thinking and can make it more difficult to prepare and present a strong and effective case.
  5. Keep your lawyer updated about changes to your situation. Criminal proceedings can be time-consuming, and a change in your situation can affect your case. Remain in contact with your lawyer, and keep him updated about your situation and any new information you learn.
  6. Be patient. The legal system moves slowly. Also, remember that your lawyer has other cases and might not be able to take your call or respond to you immediately. Be patient, and know that your lawyer will get back to you as quickly as possible.

How to Communicate Effectively with Your Criminal Defense Attorney

Effective communication begins during your first meeting with your lawyer. Your lawyer knows very little about your case and is relying on you to explain the details. In addition to discussing the specifics of your case, you should also be prepared to discuss the best way for your lawyer to communicate with you.

What Is the Best Way to Contact You? What is the best phone number to reach you? Do you prefer a phone call, or is a text better? What is your email address, and does anyone else have access to your email? What is the best way to contact you about an urgent matter?

When to Contact You? What is the best time to reach you? Can your lawyer call you at work, or do you prefer to take calls at home? What is the best way to contact you in a time-sensitive situation?

How Often to Contact You? How frequently do you want to hear from your criminal defense attorney? Of course, your lawyer will provide you with updates on the status of your case. Some people prefer an update every week or every two weeks, while others only want an update when there is new information about their case.

Contact Elmen Legal for Criminal Defense in Ann Arbor, Michigan

Speaking with your criminal defense lawyer should not be intimidating. You and your lawyer need to work together as a team to build an effective defense. You hired your criminal defense lawyer for a reason, and the final decision in a criminal case lies with you as the client. But an experienced criminal defense lawyer knows the law and the procedural requirements in your case and can help you achieve a successful result.

To learn more and discuss your situation, call (734) 707-8915 or contact Elmen Legal today to schedule an appointment with Ann Arbor criminal defense attorney Robert Elmen.