Should I Still Hire an Attorney if I Think I’m Guilty?
July 13, 2023
Making mistakes is a part of life. It’s not uncommon for an individual to have a momentary lapse of judgment, do something they should not, and end up facing charges for committing a crime. If you’ve found yourself in such a situation, even if you believe you are indeed guilty of the crime with which you’re charged, it’s still important for you to hire an attorney to stand up for you and lead you through the legal process.
Attorney Anthony Bretz combines extensive experience and strong compassion for clients as they face various types of criminal charges and seek a pathway through the legal process to reach a favorable outcome. If you are facing criminal charges in the greater St. Louis area, including the Missouri counties of St. Charles, Jefferson, and Franklin, contact Bretz Law, LLC today and schedule a consultation to talk about your case.
Potential Consequences of a Guilty Plea
Though you may think you truly are guilty of the crime, you may believe entering a guilty plea and agreeing to whatever the prosecution asks of you is the right thing to do. While making a plea deal may eventually be your best option, that is not always the case. There are tremendously important factors to take into consideration when deciding if pleading guilty is actually your strongest option.
In many instances, entering a guilty plea includes accepting a certain amount of incarceration. Time spent behind bars is time you can never get back in your life, which makes this one of the most important things to think about when it comes to pleading guilty. Having an attorney by your side can ensure you have the guidance you need to make a wise decision for your future.
In addition to potential jail time, many charges involve paying significant fines. Pleading guilty to a crime could result in you being given a fine that will cripple you financially for years to come, limiting your ability to provide for your family or make the most of your future.
Driver’s License Suspensions
Some crimes, including driving offenses, can result in a suspension or complete revocation of your driving privileges. Losing your ability to legally operate a vehicle can have far-reaching consequences and should not be taken lightly.
Agreeing to probation can limit your freedom in other ways than spending time behind bars, with heavy restrictions being placed on your activity and regular meetings with a probation officer being required.
Many companies have employees sign documentation that includes personal conduct clauses, leaving them open to the possibility of losing their job if they plead guilty to certain crimes.
Professional Licensing Impact
Many lines of work place stringent requirements regarding criminal records. Pleading guilty to a crime or having some types of convictions on your record could result in losing your professional license and being unable to continue working in your chosen field.
Voting & Firearm Rights
If you have a felony criminal conviction on your record, you will lose your right to vote in elections, as well as your right to purchase or possess a firearm.
Deportation & Immigration Issues
For foreign nationals who receive criminal convictions, there are significant immigration issues that will arise, including the possibility of being deported from the United States entirely.
Child Custody Consequences
Existing child custody agreements may be put at risk if you are convicted of a crime. If you are considering entering a plea agreement, and you are currently involved in a child custody dispute or have an agreement already in place, you must consider how your guilty plea could impact your right to spend time with your children.
Personal Relationship Fallout
In addition to the legal and professional effects a criminal conviction may bring, it is important to consider the negative and long-lasting impact such a conviction may have on your relationships with your family and friends.
Reasons You Still Need an Attorney
As you can now understand, simply entering a guilty plea may not necessarily be in your best interests, even though you acknowledge committing the crime you’re being charged with. There are important reasons you still need to have a knowledgeable attorney in your corner.
An experienced criminal defense attorney will be able to provide you with the reliable legal guidance you need throughout the legal process, inform you about any potential options you may have (including diversion programs or other alternatives to jail), and help you navigate the legal process. If negotiating a plea agreement does end up being your best option, your attorney will be able to advocate for you and negotiate on your behalf.
Communicating with Your Attorney
Maintaining strong communication with your attorney is vital. Above all else, you must be fully honest with your attorney in order to get the best legal representation available. Being open and honest will allow your attorney to fully understand your situation and work with you to determine the best course of action to take.
Trust an Experienced Attorney
Facing criminal charges may be the most stressful and discouraging experience of your life. Even if you believe you committed the crime you’re being charged with, you still have rights that must be protected and a future you should fight for. Attorney Anthony Bretz has the skills and insights to assess your case, explain the legal options that are available to you, and help guide you in the right direction as you pursue a positive result.
If you are located in the greater St. Louis, Missouri, area, including the counties of Jefferson, Franklin, or St. Charles, contact Bretz Law, LLC to discuss your case and begin putting together your legal strategy.