Defense Attorney Melbourne, FL
Our firm houses a defense attorney Melbourne, FL residents recommend when facing legal entanglements. When you find yourself charged with a crime, taking the right steps is key if you don’t want to handle your situation properly. It can be easy to panic, but it will not help your situation if you do not take the right actions. You must be careful about the steps you take following a criminal charge. If you do nothing or don’t take the necessary actions to build a strong defense, then you risk making your situation even more precarious. It is still possible to receive beneficial legal help, so don’t give up right away just because you are charged. Criminal charges should never be taken lightly, especially considering that the consequences can be heavy and incredibly impactful for those convicted and their families. This is just one reason to contact a defense attorney from The Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie & Wood. We are available to not only protect your rights, but our extensive experience in representing those charged with crimes sets us apart from other Florida lawyers.
A defense attorney will be your strongest advocate if you find yourself in trouble with the law. You don’t have to worry about figuring out how to deal with your charge alone. If you need legal assistance, you can count on a defense attorney who will be committed to protecting your rights. Every person is innocent until proven guilty, and every person deserves to have fair access to a skilled and experienced attorney. Explore your legal options and contact a defense attorney who is ready to fight for you today.
The Impact of a Criminal Conviction
If you have been charged with a crime, the consequences can be severe if convicted. Even if you are charged with a misdemeanor, it can still have a tremendous impact on your life. While the court will hand down penalties that can forever impact a person’s life sometimes, even after time has been served and fines are paid, there can also be other long-term, adverse outcomes. Don’t assume that a conviction for a small offense will result in a lenient sentence or consequences that won’t affect you in significant ways. Even if you are convicted for a minor offense, you may experience negative consequences that can impact you financially or limit your ability to move around. It can strain your relationships with family and friends. Any kind of criminal conviction can result in consequences that you don’t always anticipate.
After serving jail time, you may have trouble getting jobs you want and you could face other financial hardships. There could be restrictions put in place regarding who you are allowed to see and how you spend your time. The consequences of a conviction can affect you long after the incident. While penalties can certainly range depending upon the crime, here are some possible consequences of a criminal conviction:
- Jail Time
- Lengthy Prison Sentence
- Community Service
- Time Away from Family
- Legal Fees
- Loss of Civil Rights
- Difficulty Obtaining Employment
- Impacted Relationships
- Difficulty Being Approved for Housing Applications
Life after serving jail time could be much different than before your conviction. You may struggle to stay financially stable or have a large amount of debt due to legal fees. There will be a lot of changes that you have to adjust to. For legal guidance if you are charged with a crime, act quickly and set up a consultation with a top defense attorney.
You may be going through many emotions as you figure out how to deal with your legal dilemma. The good news is that you still have options. People facing a criminal charge have access to legal help. As long as you know to take the right steps that are most beneficial to your case, you have a chance at obtaining a good outcome. Remember to remain calm and don’t make brash decisions that can negatively harm your case. Speak with a defense attorney as soon as you can to learn about your full legal rights and the next steps you should follow. They will assess your case and provide step by step guidance so that you are protected.
After serving time, collateral consequences can follow. However, by hiring a skilled defense attorney, you may be able to minimize the consequences. For example, instead of serving jail time, you may end up paying fines and doing a certain number of hours of community service. Though there are still consequences you must pay, they are less severe. A skilled defense attorney is knowledgeable about how to approach your case and can provide you legal assistance so that you don’t have to face the worst consequences. They can build a strong argument that aims to have your charge modified, or even dropped altogether. A Melbourne, Florida defense attorney that you rely on should be the initial step taken after a criminal charge. With so much riding on the case’s outcome, having a professional to protect your rights will be critical.
Criminal Defense and the Court of Public Opinion
The criminal justice system is based on the presumption of innocence, and all accused individuals are granted the right to an attorney. Unfortunately, the 24/7 availability of information and societal appetite for scandal can complicate your criminal proceedings and put you at a disadvantage before you ever see a courtroom. Adding to the looming threat of conviction, criminal accusations brought into the public sphere can wreak havoc on your career, your family, and your future endeavors. An experienced defense attorney in Melbourne, FL can assist you in preserving not only your rights, but your reputation as well.
Criminal cases involving allegations of sexual misconduct often catch the attention of local and sometimes even national media. Journalists may attempt to obtain a statement from you in response to accusations of inappropriate sexual behavior, sometimes even before you are formally accused, and if you respond your words could have a negative impact on your case and be used against you as the investigation progresses. Obtaining counsel from a defense attorney in Melbourne, FL immediately upon learning of the accuser’s claims will help protect you, and experienced attorneys at the Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie & Wood are well-qualified to guide you through every stage of the process.
Defendants in criminal cases involving financial crimes such as fraud, embezzlement, money laundering, and bribery are sometimes villainized in the press before the facts of the case are even investigated. If you are accused of a crime involving the transfer of money, or even if you simply suspect that you may be accused, a defense attorney in Melbourne, FL can advise you on appropriate measures to take to aid your defense. While criminal prosecution of financial crimes can be emotionally fraught, much of the process involves lengthy reviews of large volumes of paperwork, and defendants are often intimidated by the projected timeframes and costs. From individual matters such as tax fraud to allegations of larger schemes on behalf of a group or a company, attorneys at the Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie & Wood are prepared to aggressively defend your case in the most cost-effective manner possible.
If your criminal case is likely to make headlines and evoke strong emotions in your community, adhering to the following guidelines will help prevent the court of public opinion from deciding your fate:
- Exercise your right to remain silent
- Hire an attorney immediately
- Agree to cooperate UNDER GUIDANCE OF COUNSEL
Reasons to Contact a Criminal Defense Attorney
Facing a criminal charge can be incredibly stressful as a possible conviction can carry heavy consequences. Some people may believe that they can manage the criminal system independently, without legal counsel; however, depending upon the severity of the crime, this may not be in your best interest. If you have faced legal trouble before or have a complicated history, hiring an attorney is crucial if you want to have the best defense possible. Compared to a defense attorney, the average person’s knowledge of the law and court system is minimal. As you move through your case, there could be obstacles that come up which can impact your argument. Here are some reasons that our services may be essential to ensure the best possible outcome for your case:
- Criminal defense lawyers have a vast knowledge of criminal law and local court systems in your area, which can be advantageous to your case.
- Due to their experience, they are likely to have helped past clients who have faced similar charges or have helped clients with similar backgrounds
- Understands criminal law and can strategize the best defense for your case.
- To give yourself the best opportunity at an outcome in your favor.
- Can negotiate deals with prosecutors.
- You will have someone on your side who will provide you with their honest opinion on moving forward by providing their objective and professional viewpoint.
- Representing yourself can be overwhelming and may even make matters worse.
- Public defenders often carry high caseloads and may not be able to dedicate the time needed to your case.
- For help gathering evidence in support of your case.
Criminal defense lawyers provide many advantages, a few other layers of support, including someone who can give regular case updates and even offer emotional support and guidance during an incredibly stressful and challenging time. You are not left to figure out where to begin with your case, or solve every issue that comes up yourself. Navigating such complex legal matters can put you through a lot of stress, and having a defense attorney by your side can make the process more manageable. They can be there at your side during times when you need a morale boost or are feeling particularly stressed about your case development. A lawyer who will be committed to advocating for you will not judge you based on your past or background. Whatever the nature of your case is, a defense lawyer will be objective and assist you throughout the entire process. You can take comfort in knowing that you do not have to go through the experience on your own. To learn more about how a defense attorney can assist you, contact an attorney today.
Accused? Start Planning Your Legal Defense Now
Whether you are facing criminal charges or civil liability, it is important to have an experienced defense attorney to represent your interests. Legal issues are similar to medical or dental problems: if they are not effectively dealt with early on, they tend to get bigger, more complicated and more difficult to resolve. The law offices of Arcadier, Biggie & Wood have handled hundreds of cases in both criminal and civil law and will guide you through what can be one of the most difficult experiences in life.
Whether you’ve been expected to be arrested or it comes out of the blue, those first moments are crucial to your criminal defense. When the arresting officer reads you your rights (failing to Mirandize a suspect has been causing for dismissing a case), take them seriously. Say nothing to anyone until you have spoken with legal counsel. That is your Constitutional right, as is your right to have an attorney represent you. It is true that under the Constitution, law enforcement must appoint a defender for you at no cost, but these public servants are overworked and often underpaid. They may be unable to give your case the full attention it deserves. On the other hand, Arcadier, Biggie & Wood has resources not always available to a public defender’s office, and far fewer criminal cases.
Even if you are guilty, a defense attorney in Melbourne, FL can negotiate with the prosecution to possibly get you a reduced sentence.
Engaging with Social Media Before Your Case Has Been Resolved
If you have already been arrested (and are not simply anticipating that charges may be filed against you at some point), you have been read your Miranda rights. This warning, that “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law” applies—in a general way, of course—to your activity on social media while your case is pending. Even if you have enabled the strictest possible privacy settings on your social media accounts, the prosecutor assigned to your case can track your social media activity and potentially use it as evidence against you. As a result, it is best to refrain from engaging on social media—even sending direct messages or logging “likes” of things—until your case has resolved.
If social media engagement is particularly important to you and you don’t feel that you’ll be able to refrain from using it, connect with a Melbourne, FL defense attorney at The Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie & Wood to learn more about strategies that you should employ at this time so that you don’t unintentionally damage the strength of your defense due to your social media choices.
If You’re Also Navigating Family Law Challenges
If you are currently navigating a divorce and/or child custody challenges, please inform the team at The Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie & Wood of your situation when you meet with us. Depending upon the nature of the criminal charges that you’re facing and the family legal challenges that you’re navigating, we may be able to provide your family law attorney with valuable information that could potentially mitigate the stress of dealing with both of these legal hurdles at once.
If You’re Thinking About “Running”
When humans are particularly stressed or are placed in a position of danger, their bodies instinctively employ a “fight, flight, or freeze” response. As the response is instinctual, you can’t really help whether you feel compelled to fight, freeze, or flee in the face of being charged with criminal wrongdoing. However, you can help how you choose to respond to your body’s cues. If you feel tempted to run from the charges against you, sit on your hands and take massive breaths until you calm down long enough to connect with a Melbourne, FL defense attorney at our firm. Do. Not. Run. Running will only make things worse for you and could result in additional charges being added to those already levied against you. Feeling like you want to flee is normal. However, actually fleeing is a crime and is, therefore, not a viable option.
Seeking Legal Guidance Immediately Is Critically Important
If you have been charged with criminal wrongdoing or expect that you will face such charges soon, seeking legal guidance proactively will help to ensure that the experienced Florida legal team at Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie & Wood can build the strongest possible defense on your behalf. Do not wait to seek legal guidance. Connect with a knowledgeable Melbourne, FL defense attorney at our firm immediately so that you can have the strongest possible shot at a conviction-free future.
If You Are a Named Defendant in a Lawsuit
Although the stakes are not as high in a civil action (meaning you are not at risk for jail or prison time), the rule of “remaining silent” still applies. The plaintiff’s attorney in civil litigation will do everything they can to prove your liability. This includes gleaning your social media posts and interviewing anyone connected with the complaint. Therefore, you should say nothing to anyone except a defense attorney in Melbourne, FL.
One major difference between a criminal case and a civil lawsuit is the standard of proof. If you are accused of a crime, the prosecution must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. However, in a civil action, liability needs only be proven based on a preponderance of the evidence. This can make avoiding liability more difficult, but you can count on a defense attorney in Melbourne, FL to do everything in their power to disprove the plaintiff’s case.
A DUI is one of the most common types of criminal charges that individuals face each day, and is one of the most consequential offenses. It can be easy to lose track of how much you drink, and for some people this can have significant consequences. Some people who drink don’t even realize they have drunk too much and just get in the car. Despite their best judgment, people drink and get behind the wheel. If you are convicted for driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol in the state of Florida, there can be residual effects of that conviction on your driving record. Even a first-time DUI conviction can cause issues. It can result in fines and the loss of your driver’s license. Anyone arrested for DUI should contact a defense attorney Melbourne, FL clients recommend immediately.
In Florida, the legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit is 0.08 percent. If you have a BAC of 0.08 or higher, you are considered legally drunk, and an officer will arrest you for drunk driving. If your BAC registers between 0.05 to 0.08 percent, you can still be arrested for DUI if the officer thinks your behavior indicates you are under the influence.
Penalties for DUI convictions in Florida can be harsh:
First DUI Conviction
If a driver’s BAC was between 0.08 and 0.15, they face a fine of between $500 to $1,000 and jail time from at least eight hours up to six months. They also face having their driver’s license revoked for six months to one year, probation up to one year, and mandatory 50 hours of community service. The driver’s vehicle is also impounded for 10 days. While the consequences of a first-time DUI conviction vary, it can still impact your life in several ways and should not be taken lightly.
If the driver’s BAC was higher than 0.15, or they had a minor in the vehicle, they face a fine of between $1,000 to $2,000 and the maximum jail time they face is nine months. As a Melbourne, FL defense attorney can explain, even a first DUI conviction can be extremely expensive, both financially and personally.
Second DUI Conviction
If a driver’s BAC was between 0.08 and 0.15, they face a fine of between $1,000 and $2,000 and jail time up to nine months, however, if it has been less than five years from the first conviction, there is a mandatory 10 days in jail. Drivers also face 180 days to one year of probation and a maximum five-year driver’s license suspension. Their vehicle will also be impounded for up to 30 days and they must complete Florida DUI school. They will also be required to install an ignition interlock device when they are allowed to drive again.
If the driver’s BAC was higher than 0.15, or they had a minor in the vehicle, they face a fine of between $2,000 to $4,000 and the maximum jail time they face is up to one year. The court may grant permission for that time to be served in a substance abuse program.
Third DUI Conviction
If a driver’s BAC was between 0.08 and 0.15, they face a fine of between $2,000 and $5,000 and jail time up to five years, however, if it has been less than 10 years from the last DUI conviction, there is a mandatory 30 days in jail. A Melbourne, FL defense attorney knows that drivers also face 180 days to one year of probation and loss of license for up to 10 years. Their vehicle will also be impounded for up to 90 days and they must complete Florida DUI multiple offender school. They will also be required to install an ignition interlock device when they are allowed to drive again. Drivers will also have a permanent felony conviction on their record. A conviction also means up to 50 hours of community service or a fee of $10 per hour of service.
6 Myths About Criminal Defense Attornies
The role of a criminal defense attorney is often misunderstood. These are some of the most common myths about criminal defense attornies.
1. Using a Public Defender Is Just As Good As Hiring a Criminal Defense Attorney
There are many talented public defenders; however, public defenders are often overloaded with cases and may not have the time to devote to your case that you would like. A defense attorney in Melbourne, FL will be able to invest the time and energy into your defense that it deserves.
2. All Criminal Defense Attornies Are the Same
No matter what profession you look at, some people in that profession are better at their jobs than others. It is the same with criminal defense attorneys. Skill and experience play a big role in the outcome of cases. Choose a defense attorney in Melbourne, FL who has experience trying cases like yours and a track record of success.
3. Lawyers Are Only Interested in Money
Lawyers want to be paid for their work, just like anyone else, but most lawyers don’t get into the profession for solely financial reasons. The team at The Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie & Wood are dedicated to protecting your rights and being your strongest advocate. They will work hard to achieve the best possible outcome for your case.
4. Criminal Defense Attornies Are Shady Characters
Some people view criminal defense attorneys in a negative light because they see them as trying to help guilty people avoid facing the consequences of their crimes. In reality, criminal defense attorneys are dedicated to ensuring that their clients receive their constitutional right to a fair trial. Without criminal defense attorneys, the judicial system in the United States would not work as intended.
5. Any Lawyer Can Defend You in Court
The legal system in the United States is complex and while all lawyers know something about criminal law, lawyers, such as the team at The Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie & Wood, who specialize in criminal defense have more expertise in that particular aspect of the law than lawyers who specialize in contracts or family law or some other specialty. Additionally, they have experience trying criminal cases in court that lawyers who do not handle criminal cases do not have.
6. All Lawyers Give Free Consultations
Many lawyers will evaluate your case for free, but not all do. You should always ask about the price before you meet with an attorney.
Our Experience Sets Us Apart
A DUI conviction is a serious offense and it can affect a person’s life in many ways. It is much more than a mark on your criminal record. The way you resolve a DUI can mean the difference between a small fine and years of jail time. When you are faced with a DUI, act quickly and obtain legal assistance right away so a lawyer can start building your defense.
The Law Offices of Arcadier, Biggie, & Wood offer Florida residents nearly 75 years of combined experience. Our eight lawyers each provide focus and expertise in different areas of the law. When facing criminal charges and a possible subsequent conviction, having one of our dedicated lawyers by your side will be one of the best steps you can take towards a resolution in your favor. Please start the process of protecting your rights today by scheduling an appointment with our Melbourne, FL defense attorney.