San Fernando Valley Criminal & DUI Defense Lawyers

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Trial and Why it Might be the Right Thing for You

Trial and Why it Might be the Right Thing for You

Many criminal defense and DUI defense lawyers want to talk to you about a plea. Plead guilty, often straight up to the charged crime. What good does this do? Good question.
If pleading guilty to the charges does not sit well with you, you’re not alone. It doesn’t sit well with me either. A win for me can take several different forms. First, a dismissal of all charges or an acquittal of all charges is certainly a win. But that’s not the only way to win. A reduction of charges can be a big win. Likewise, a reduction of punishment can be a win too. Just don’t ever let a lawyer try to sell you on pleading guilty to the “minimum” under the law and convince you that this is a win.

Winning sometimes also requires fighting. This takes time and often costs money. Typically, my retainer or fee agreement with clients requires a payment for the case without trial. If the case is going to trial, I ask for more money. This is usually a “per day” fee for trial. A flat fee can be agreed up either for trial or for the entire case including trial. I think the additional trial fee is a better deal for the client. Frankly, paying me separately for trial gives me significant motivation to perform.

Clients often want some sort of assurances before they spend more money on their cases. Remember that any lawyer who makes promises or guarantees is lying to you. The only promise I can make is to do my best work for you. Simply put, sometimes my best work requires prepping a case for trial and even going to trial. I will always remember the famous words of Mike Flanagan and Charlie Unger in my class at USC Law Center, “Good things happen when we answer ‘ready for trial’”.

This isn’t always true. But it is true a lot of the time. Memories fade, witnesses lose motivation to come to court. Cops get transferred, fired, indicted, retire, get sent out for training or military service. Sometimes prosecutors simply don’t want to work or have too much work and have to prioritize. If we have a witness that doesn’t want to come to court and the prosecutor becomes aware of this, maybe an offer is forthcoming. Who knows the reason and who cares? My job is to do everything I can to get my client’s charges dismissed or reduced or minimize the punishment. And that’s what I do.

If you or someone close to you has been arrested or charged with a crime, call someone with decades of experience. Call someone who isn’t afraid to answer ready for trial.
Call me: Attorney Jeffrey Vallens (818) 783-5700 or (805) 230-3651

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I look forward to actually helping you.

Stay safe and healthy.