1. What do I do I just got contacted by the police concerning a criminal investigation? Ask for an attorney! Immediately call Rideout Law, if it is after hours leave a message but do not talk to the police without representation. If you ask for an Attorney, a phone should be provided to you.
2. I have an arraignment date what should I do? Shouldn't I just plead guilty? You should talk to an attorney before your arraignment! You need to have someone look at the evidence and the law before you decide to plead, you may not be guilty of a crime at all! It is very hard under Arizona Law to withdraw from a plea after you have plead guilty so please don't think that after the fact that you can easily change your mind. At your arraignment, sometimes judges and prosecutors will make it seem like pleading guilty is your only option. Please do not plead guilty without represetantion. If you plead without represetation you are giving up an important Constitutional right.
3. I have an attorney and I don't like the way they are handling my case can I switch? Yes, you are not handcuffed to your attorney now. You can switch attorneys. (with a few exceptions) You should be confortable with your attorney. You should feel you are getting treated with respect and dignity. If you hire Rideout Law to replace your old attorney, Rideout Law will inform your old firm about your intent to switch.
4. How do I pick an attorney for my criminal case? First, pick an attorney who you are comfortable with. If you don't like your attorney in the first meeting you risk being unsatisfied in the long run. Your criminal case is going to last, more than likely, at least a few months with multiple meetings and phone calls. You need to be confortable enough to tell your attorney everything, without an interpersonal confort it will be hard for you to get important information to your attorney that he or she needs. Second, you get what you pay for. Third, pick someone who is involved with criminal cases on a regular basis. Rideout Law does not do Family Law or Contracts, but Rideout law does handle criminal cases everyday! Fourth, look around, call or meet with at least a few attorney's before you make a decision. Finally, ask other friends or family who may have had a criminal case in the past who they used and if they were satisfied.
5. What questions should I ask a criminal attorney when hiring a firm? How long they have been an attorney? Have they ever had any bar complaints? (you can check this on the Arizona State Bar website) Where did they go to school? How many trials have they done? Is there a consultation fee for just coming in to talk? Is the Attorney fee hourly or flat? If it is a flat fee, what types of things does that fee cover? If you have a DUI, does the flat fee cover the DMV adminstrative hearing too? If you are hiring a firm out of the area you received the criminal charge, does the attorney cover court him or herself in person? Does the attorney ever cover hearings telephonically, leaving their client in the court by themselves?
6. How do I pay for Rideout Law to represent me? Rideout Law does accept payment by check and credit card. In addition, in certain cases flexible payment plans can be arraigned.
7. How much is it for a consultation at Rideout Law? Rideout Law consultations are always free!