Thursday, October 18, 2012
Free Answers to Your Legal Questions
As an experienced Minnesota Criminal Defense Attorney I get a lot of questions --- a lot. Here are some answers to the most common.
Q: What is the difference between misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor & a felony?
A: There are four levels of criminal charges in Minnesota. The lowest level is a petty misdemeanor such as a basic traffic offense. The next is a misdemeanor. This carries a maximum sentence of a $1000 fine and/or 90 days in jail. Next is a gross misdemeanor which is a more serious crime that carries a maximum $3000 fine and/or one year in jail. The highest level is a felony. Each specific felony-level criminal act carries a punishment severity as specified by statute for each specific offense.
Q: I’m charged with a crime. Do I need a lawyer?
A: You are always better off seeking professional assistance if you are accused of a crime. An experienced lawyer understands the intricacies of how the system works and can help you avoid the pitfalls that exist in every criminal prosecution. Keep in mind that not all lawyers are well suited to handle criminal matters.
If you find yourself charged with a crime, you should contact The Rolloff Law Office. immediately for a free consultation. I help you assess your case and determine what defenses you have in your case. The difference between me and the other guys is that, because I once was a prosecutor, I know this stuff from all sides --- and I understand that a criminal charge can affect many areas of a person’s life.
Q: What can a lawyer do for me?
A: An experienced lawyer can guide you through the criminal justice system and obtain more favorable results for your case. First, I will work to get your case dismissed. If that option is unavailable, I will work on building a defense that forces the prosecutor to compromise. No matter the outcome, I can help lessen the stress of facing a criminal charge and bring about a resolution that you will feel good about.
Q: Will I have to pay bail if I’m charged with a crime?
A: Depending on what type of charges you are facing, you might have to bail before you can be released from jail. If you are charged with a gross misdemeanor or felony, the Court must set reasonable bail or conditions of release. If you or someone you know is charged with a crime, you should contact The Rolloff Law Office regarding your bail situation. I can help get bail set, argue for reduced bail, explore alternative conditional release options or arrange for a bonding agent to help get you released.
Q: Should I just enter a plea on a 1st time DWI since everyone gets the same deal anyway?
A: No! The decision to settle is always yours but simply entering a guilty plea means you will not have the opportunity to investigate your case. Most of the time the prosecutor only knows a little bit about your case based on what the arresting officer puts in the police report. A lawyer will help you tell your side of the case. At a minimum, a lawyer will help you structure your settlement in a way that considers your point of view.
Q: What happens to my record if I get convicted of a crime?
A: A criminal conviction will become part of your record once you enter a guilty plea or you are found guilty of a crime by a court or jury. In a DWI prosecution, the State will use any prior DWI or DWI-related driver’s license revocation during the preceding 10 years as grounds to charge you with a higher degree of DWI. Also, different sentencing provisions can impact how a conviction will affect your record. You should contact The Rolloff Law Office to discuss your case before entering a plea to any charges.
The Rolloff Law Office --- FREE CONSULTATIONS. Call today: (612) 234-1165