Dear Student,

Are you thinking of Law as a Career but want an insight of what fields are available after completion of your basic law studies? Do you think you have the zeal and are brave enough to be a criminal lawyer?

SmartPrep gives you a detailed scope of Criminal Law as a Profession.

Law refers to rules of conduct and is imposed by the state in the adherence of justice. A Lawyer is that person who practice law, counsel and advise people about their legal rights and proposes necessary actions to access these rights. A lawyer is expected to collect data, facts, figures, documents and witnesses to support the cases.

Criminal law is considered to be the most thrilling branch of law. Apart from defensing the client, a lawyer needs to deal with offense against an individual or society. A lot of cross examining and interrogating are involved to provide justice to the case.

Five intentions are widely accepted for enforcement of the criminal law by punishments: retribution, deterrence, incapacitation, rehabilitation and restoration. Jurisdictions differ on the value to be placed on each.

  • Retribution – Criminals ought to suffer in some way. This is the most widely seen goal. Criminals have taken improper advantage, or inflicted unfair detriment, upon others and consequently, the criminal law will put criminals at some unpleasant disadvantage to “balance the scales.” People submit to the law to receive the right not to be murdered and if people contravene these laws, they surrender the rights granted to them by the law. Thus, one who murders may be executed himself. A related theory includes the idea of “righting the balance.”

  • DeterrenceIndividual deterrence is aimed toward the specific offender. The aim is to impose a sufficient penalty to discourage the offender from criminal behavior. General deterrence aims at society at large. By imposing a penalty on those who commit offenses, other individuals are discouraged from committing those offenses.

  • Incapacitation – Designed simply to keep criminals away from society so that the public is protected from their misconduct. This is often achieved through prison sentences today. The death penalty or banishment has served the same purpose.

  • Rehabilitation – Aims at transforming an offender into a valuable member of society. Its primary goal is to prevent further offense by convincing the offender that their conduct was wrong.

  • Restoration – This is a victim-oriented theory of punishment. The goal is to repair, through state authority, any injury inflicted upon the victim by the offender. For example, one who embezzles will be required to repay the amount improperly acquired. Restoration is commonly combined with other main goals of criminal justice and is closely related to concepts in the civil law, i.e. returning the victim to his or her original position before the injury.

Criminal Lawyer – Job Description
As part of the lawyer’s job functions, a criminal lawyer will:

  • Examine the case and interview witnesses
  • Inquire case law, statutes, crimes codes and procedural law
  • Develop a case study and figure out a defense
  • Negotiate with the prosecution
  • Draft, file and argue motions such as motions to dismiss and motions to suppress
  • Advocate for the defendant at trial
  • Draft, file and argue appeals

Criminal Lawyer – Skills

  • Excellent oral and written advocacy skills

  • Investigative and research skills

  • Strong creative thinking and Analytical skills

  • In-depth understanding of state, federal and local rules, court procedures, evidentiary laws and local judges to navigate the criminal justice system efficiently and competently.

  • Excellent interpersonal skills

  • Ability to attract & retain clients is essential to a thriving criminal defense practice.

Criminal Lawyer – Challenges Faced

  • Long and irregular work hours.
  • Meeting clients outside – at prisons, hospitals, etc.
  • Those criminal lawyers who are allowed national practice, frequent traveling is involved.

Criminal Lawyer – Salaries/ Remuneration

The salaries vary, depending on the size and scope of the practice, the clientele the firm serves and the geographic location of the firm. Depending on the designation and experience of a candidate, salary may range anything between 20,000 to one lakh rupees a month. Many MNCs and law firms also hire and pay packages are between three to four lakh rupees in a year. Highest paid criminal lawyers are those that represent wealthy defendants and high-profile cases.

For more information on taking LAW as a CAREER, you can visit any of our centers near you and our counselors would be happy to guide you.

All the Best!

SmartPrep Team

Criminal Law as a Profession

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