We’ve all seen crime shows and news stories with defendants and plaintiffs battling it out before a judge. The attorneys are either portrayed as noble servants or greedy cheaters, sending mixed messages about their true position.
Most attorneys are not the stereotypical liars that you see in the media. Rather, they’re available to help those in need. You might need a good attorney one day, and here are three instances where this might occur.
Two things are certain in life: death and taxes. A good probate attorney can help you with both. A probate attorney is responsible for legally settling the final affairs of a deceased person. They can handle these settlements before death, after death, or both.
In most cases, the probate lawyer focuses on settling the distribution of assets after death. If you don’t have an attorney handle this estate planning for you, your assets and money will be metered out by the state, and your family won’t necessarily like the results. By planning your estate, you ensure your money, property, vehicles, jewelry, and other assets of value are given to the people of your choice, be it family, friends, or a charity.
A probate lawyer will also help you write your last will and testament. Unless you have a probate attorney write up and sign your last will and testament, it can be disputed as invalid in court.
Probate attorneys also help with valuing and appraising belongings, collecting life insurance proceeds, making appropriate distributions of retirement funds, advising on the settling of the deceased’s debts, addressing tax issues, settling disputes between beneficiaries, retitling property, and working with the court. When you’re nearing the end of your life or you’re dealing with the death of a loved one, you’ll be more than grateful for a seasoned probate attorney.
Criminal defense attorney
Nobody wants to be accused of a crime, but it might happen. Even if you’re not guilty, you might find yourself in the wrong place at the wrong time and you need an attorney to avoid a wrongful conviction. A criminal defense attorney protects you from incriminating yourself while the investigation is in the process of revealing the full truth.
A criminal defense lawyer can also defend you if you’re facing a DUI charge. This is a criminal offense that goes on your record, and a good attorney can help minimize your sentence and eventually expunge the wrongdoing from your record.
If you have committed a crime, whether petty or serious, a criminal defense attorney will stand by your side. They’ll explain the complexity of the charges to you and help you make decisions that benefit you. You may not get off scot-free even with the best attorney, but you can enjoy a reduced sentence.
Personal injury attorney
You may one day be a victim of a personal injury or tort. This occurs when you’re injured due to negligent or intentional actions by another person. Serious injuries come with hefty medical bills and often property damage, and you shouldn’t be responsible for covering this burden when it’s not your fault. Some of the most common personal injury claims include car accidents, slip and fall injuries, workplace accidents, dog bites, assault and battery, and medical malpractice.
There’s another kind of personal injury known as defamation of character. This doesn’t cause physical injury, but rather injury to your reputation. If your reputation has been threatened through the words, whether spoken or printed, of another person, you may have grounds to sue for defamation.
Going to court is a stomach-wrenching hassle, and even though attorneys are expensive, it’s better to have a talented legal consultant on your side when you’re in the courtroom.