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What does it mean to work as a criminal law attorney

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The true life of the criminal lawyer differs dramatically from the romanticized versions often portrayed in film and on television. Both public defenders and prosecutors must process numerous cases on limited budgets through an over-burdened and under-funded criminal justice system. Rarely can a defendant afford to present a case with the assistance of a highly paid "dream team" of attorneys. Prosecutors must often rely on informants and other witnesses with their own extensive records of past convictions, who may agree to testify only in an effort to reduce their own sentences and punishment.
 
What does it mean to work as a criminal law attorney

What is Criminal Law?

The true life of the criminal lawyer differs dramatically from the romanticized versions often portrayed in film and on television. Both public defenders and prosecutors must process numerous cases on limited budgets through an over-burdened and under-funded criminal justice system. Rarely can a defendant afford to present a case with the assistance of a highly paid "dream team" of attorneys. Prosecutors must often rely on informants and other witnesses with their own extensive records of past convictions, who may agree to testify only in an effort to reduce their own sentences and punishment.

Criminal trials are inherently dramatic. Movies and television make the most of courtroom drama—from classics that challenge our notion of justice, such as To Kill a Mockingbird, to farces designed solely to entertain, such as the trial portrayed in the last episode of the hit comedy Seinfeld. But trials are only a small part of the picture. Well over 90% of all criminal matters are resolved through plea bargains without trial. Thus, both prosecutors and defense attorneys are constantly involved in high-stakes negotiations that will determine the fate of the defendant.

Criminal lawyers work tirelessly—both inside and outside the courtroom, in advance of trial and, if necessary, during trial—in the zealous representation of their clients. Being a criminal lawyer requires a substantial set of skills beyond being a good trial lawyer; criminal lawyers must be good negotiators, investigators, counselors, and even social workers. Criminal lawyers may be a client's only listening ear, so they must be prepared to deal with all of the stressful aspects in their client's life at that moment, not just the accused crime.

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