In today’s world, everybody is a comparison shopper. With the advent of the Internet, it takes all of about two seconds to find out where the best deal is. You can go online and compare store prices between all the big-box retailers. If you are going to buy a car, you can go to websites like truecar.com that are in the business of telling you what others in your area paid for a car you’re looking at.
It’s dangerous to be a comparison shopper when it comes to any personal legal issue you may have. There are no websites like truecar.com for legal issues. You can’t gauge what the best outcome is for your case based on what another person in your situation received.
Criminal Case Plea Offers
Nothing scares me more than when a criminal defense client tells me he or she talked to a “friend,” “relative,” or even worse a fellow inmate, that has advised them what they should get as far as a plea offer or a result on a case. The reason is those people don’t specifically know the facts of your case, the laws applicable to it. They also do not know the temperament of the judge, mitigating reasons, aggravating factors, or any other intangible fact that all play a role in determining the outcome of your specific case.
Criminal defense attorneys have taken a significant amount of time to go through schooling to understand the law and how to apply it in very specific situations. I cannot stress enough each case is different. Now, it is true many first-time offenders and up with the same plea offer or outcome for a case, and that should not be ignored however it shouldn’t be set in stone that that will be the same result for you.
Instead of relying on your friend, relative, or fellow inmate to get your legal advice, the first step you may want to take is to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney to get a feel for what the possible outcome could be. Although no attorney should tell you what you should be getting the first time they meet you, they can get a feel for what the results could be. In my book “My Loved One Has Been Arrested; What’s Next?”, I address some of these issues.
In my Special Report, Top 5 things Criminal Defense Attorney’s Don’t Want you to Know, I give you additional tips on how to interview the right attorney for you so you can make the best decision on how to proceed with your case.
Personal Injury Claims
Have you noticed the billboards on I-95 advertising “Joe Blow attorney got me $1 million dollars,” and it shows a picture of someone giving a thumbs up? If you’re injured in an accident and you have the expectation that this will be the same result for your injury case if you hire that firm, you will be sadly mistaken.
Just like in the examples above there are several different factors that make in injury case unique. So, the truck accident that cripples an individual will definitely have a higher value than the fender bender in the Publix shopping center. Many factors are involved in determining the value of a personal injury case. You can read about what makes your case more valuable in my book “What the Heck is My Case Worth? And Why Billboard Advertising can be Deceiving.”
Apples to Apples
Remember, no case is exactly the same. Automatically thinking you’re going to get the same result with your case compared with another is only setting yourself up for disappointment, or in the alternative it can leave you missing opportunities to have a better result. To avoid this stress, hire an experienced attorney in the area specific to your case, and use their wisdom and expertise to guide you to the best result.