There are literally hundreds of different situations for which you might need the services of an attorney. There are both criminal and civil matters, and under each of those banners there are dozens of different specialty areas. That’s why it is important to pick an attorney with the right training and experience to deal with the particulars of your individual case.
Though there are jack of all trades attorneys who do all types of civil cases as well as criminal cases, it’s hard to get really good at certain areas of the law if you don’t specialize. For example, if you are in a boating accident, you don’t want an attorney who specializes in car accidents, you want a maritime injury lawyer. Though the attorney who deals with car accidents may be well versed in laws surrounding accidental injuries, he or she is not likely to know the nuances of boating laws that a maritime injury lawyer will. And that could mean that you don’t get the best representation, which can mean a lower settlement or, in a worst-case scenario, the dismissal of your case.
For other types of civil law, you want an attorney who specializes in the branch your case falls under. If you have a business dispute, either with a customer or a competitor, you want to be represented by a business attorney. If you are a stockbroker or financial adviser who has been accused of violating securities laws, then you want a securities fraud lawyer. And the list goes on and on. Even for everyday things such as putting together a will, you want an estate planning attorney who understands the ins and outs of inheritances and taxes.
When it comes to criminal law, it can be even more important to have an experienced lawyer, as it could mean the difference between being home and being in jail. Even for seemingly minor cases like driving while intoxicated, having the right lawyer who knows how those particular cases work can mean the difference between probation and a short license suspension and jail and a long one.
Choosing the wrong attorney can make a huge difference in your life so you want to make sure you make the right choice and find an attorney with the right experience.