What Does It Cost To Hire The Best Defense Lawyer? Do They Take Payments?
Disclaimer: This article is in response to questions frequently asked of Mr. Cobb and is an unedited dictation transcript. Just like talk to text on your smartphone, there may be misspelled words or sentence fragments.
The cost to hire the best top criminal defense lawyer in Florida is always going to be determined by a wide variety of factors. However, one big change in the area of fees for criminal law services is the use of non-traditional finance. With non-traditional finance, people can find that they have payments, which are affordable each month instead of having to pay half of a full fee down and pay the balance in three to five months. In fact, many of the best top criminal defense lawyers are in such demand that they refuse to take any planned payment arrangements at all. We have some very good lawyers in different areas across the state of Florida who is board certified specialists in criminal law, yet they will not take payment plan cases under any circumstance.
We take the payment plan cases, because we can make the payments low and affordable for people by using what is called non-traditional finance. Traditional finance is all about what is your credit score. After the great recession, however, getting a high credit score became more difficult. Someone who could easily get a loan in 2007 finds out those ten years later, they can get that same loan even though they have a good job, and they may even be making more money than they did ten years before. Non-traditional finance does not just look at someone’s credit score like traditional finance members do. Instead, other factors are considered as well. A person is treated as a whole person, and not some number. When people are treated as whole people, they are given a fair break.
When consumers are given a fair break, they can get loans anywhere from a couple of thousand dollars, or up to as much as $40,000. There is a big difference between legal fees that is $150 a month, than paying $1500 upfront. Likewise, there is even more difference between paying, say $250 a month and $1500 a month over a period of say, five months if the case is a felony. From a consumer’s standpoint, non-traditional finance looks at a whole person instead of a cold number, and is an amazingly good deal. All across the state of Florida, this is available, and in my primary practice area of Okaloosa and Walton County, city wise, this would be near Mar Beach, San Destin, and Piedmont Beach in Walton County. In Okaloosa, it would be Crestview, Niceville, Shalimar, Fort Walton Beach and, Destin.
As you can tell, Okaloosa County has several small cities which makes a huge difference in whether or not someone is going to jail or suffering harsher sentencing terms or not. When people are arrested and charged with a crime, they want the best defense possible, and they can figure out they are not going to get it if you retain a public defender. Every week, I talk to someone who says something like this, “I’ve been trying to talk to my public defender for 4 weeks and he or she has never returned a phone call.” I can tell you why they are not returning your phone calls. I was a public defender in the 1990s for about seven years. When I left the public defender’s office, cases were practically falling out of my ears, and it was one of the reasons I left.
There was no way I would ever become a specialist in criminal law if I could not devote the time necessary to do what people need to have done on their cases. I went into private practice in 1997. Today, I am the county’s only board certified specialist in criminal law. Given my experience level and certification as a specialist in criminal law, I can often do things that many lawyers do not know to do. In fact, I have probably forgotten a lot more techniques than most uncertified criminal defense lawyers even know about. This experience is possible, because I can take my time with each case. With non-traditional finance, I do not have to look somebody in the eye with a felony case, and say that will be $5000, or more upfront please. Instead, I can offer them a financing solution to make the case affordable with low payments over a long period.
Other law firms cannot, or will not do this.
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