Frequently Asked Questions
 
1. If I am innocent do I need a lawyer?
 
2. Do I need a lawyer before charges are filed against me?
 
3. If I am guilty and plan on taking a plea bargain why do I need an attorney?
 
4. What is the difference between probation and parole?
 

5. What is deferred adjudication?

 

6. How much does a lawyer cost?

 

7. How long will it take to resolve my case?

 

8. Can I get a guarantee of a certain outcome?

 
 

1. If I am innocent do I need a lawyer?

Definitely. Many people are pushed into a plea bargain to move a case quickly regardless of quilt or innocence. These pleas will appear on your record and have a lasting ramification on your life. You need someone who has your best interest in mind you guide you thought the process and protect your rights.

 

2. Do I need a lawyer before charges are filed against me?

Before charges are filed an attorney can advocate with the police and DA on your behalf and, in some cases, prevent charges from being filed. An attorney can make a presentation to the grand jury on your behalf and, in some cases, prevent indictment. Above all else, an attorney can assure your rights are protected from the very beginning of the process.

 

3. If I am guilty and plan on taking a plea bargain why do I need an attorney?

DAs and Judges work on these deals every day; they have no incentive to help you over any other defendant. Also you may not be aware of all the options. An experienced attorney has spent time building professional relationships with court personnel. They also know all the ins and outs of the system, and all the options available. They can go in and make sure you get the best deal possible.

 

4. What is the difference between probation and parole?

Probation is where a jail sentence is given but put on hold for a set period of time so long as set conditions are fulfilled. Parole is an early release from jail so long as a set of conditions are fulfilled. Neither of these options are guaranteed and the conditions can be complicated. Violations can mean jail time. You need an experienced lawyer to guide you through the process.

 

5. What is "deferred adjudication"?

In Texas this is a plea option where a defendant pleads guilty and the plea is suspended for a set time period so long as certain conditions are fulfilled. Once the time period ends and the conditions are finished the charge is dismissed. If the conditions are violated you can face jail time. These pleas are not guaranteed.

 

6. How much does a lawyer cost?

Every case is different depending on the facts and jurisdiction. Fees are based on that. You need to find a lawyer you are comfortable working with who you believe will fight for your best interest.

 

7. How long will it take to resolve my case?

This also depends on the facts and the jurisdiction. Sometimes a quick resolution is not in your best interest. An experienced attorney will work with you to get to the most advantageous outcome, no matter how long it takes.

 
8. Can I get a guarantee of a certain outcome?

No. Each case is different and there are many things that can affect the outcome. Sometimes the best thing is to plea, sometimes it is to go to trial; sometimes you can get a case dismissed. There is no way to predict an outcome. You need an experienced attorney who will work to get the best resolution to your particular case.

 
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An arrest can be a life-changing event, you have only one chance to get this right.
 
 
 
 

 

The information contained in this web site is intended to convey general information about Sarah Duncan, Attorney at Law. It should not be construed as legal advice or opinion. It is not an offer to represent you, nor is it intended to create an attorney-client relationship. Any email sent via the Internet to Sarah Duncan, Attorney at Law, using email addresses listed in this web site would not be confidential and would not create an attorney-client relationship. Copyright © 2011 Sarah Duncan, Attorney at Law, all rights reserved.

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Sarah Duncan defends people throughout North Texas including but not limited to people living in Dallas/Ft. Worth, Texas, metro area, Addison, Balch Springs, Carrollton, Cedar Hill, Cockrell Hill, Combine, Coppell, Dallas, DeSoto, Duncanville, Farmers Branch, Garland, Grand Prairie, Glenn Heights, Highland Park, Hutchins, Irving, Lancaster, Mesquite, Richardson, Rowlett, Sachse, Seagoville, Sunnyvale, University Park, Wilmer, Arlington, Azle, Bedford, Benbrook, Bisbee, Blue Mound, Bransford, Castle Hill Estate, Colleyville, Crowley, Dalworthington Gardens, Eagle Mountain, Edgecliff Village, Euless, Everman, Forest Hill, Fort Worth, Garden Acres, Grapevine, Haltom City, Handley, Haslet, Hurst, Johnsons Station, Keller, Kennedale, Lake Worth, Lakeside, Lindberg, Lytle, Mansfield, Minters Chapel, North Richland Hills, Old Union, Pantego, Pecan Acres, Pelican Bay, Rendon, Richland Hills, River Oaks, Saginaw, Sansom Park, Smithfield, Southlake, Southland Acres, Sublett, Tarrant, Tate Springs, Watauga, Watsonville, Webb, Westlake, Westland, Westover Hills, Westworth, White Settlement, Plano, Denton, Rockwall, Waxahachie, Paris, Dallas County, Tarrant County, Collin County, Denton County, Rockwall County, Ellis County, Wise County, Kaufman County, Johnson County, Hood County, Parker County, DFW, Metroplex.