Criminal

Our criminal defense team provides a full array of services to clients in need of sound, experienced representation in the criminal courts. Whether charged with a petty misdemeanor traffic offense or the most severe felony, you will be provided high-end legal services that will make the process as easy as possible for you. If you are hoping to engage in a consultation with one of our criminal defense attorneys, the only thing we need to get started is a court file number for your case. From there, we will listen to you in order to better understand your individual objectives and work together to meet those goals.

  • WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A ‘REVOKED’ DRIVER’S LICENSE AND A ‘SUSPENDED’ DRIVER’S LICENSE?


    A “revoked” driver’s license is the loss of a driver’s license and/or the privilege to drive or apply for a license. Following revocation, all applicable tests will be required in addition to the application fee and reinstatement fee in order to reinstate the driver’s license. If your license is “revoked” you cannot legally drive a motor vehicle.

    A suspended driver’s license is the temporary loss of a driver’s license and/or privilege to drive or apply for a license. Following suspension, no testing will be required to reinstate the license unless the license has expired. Reinstatement fees will still be required though. As with a revocation, if your license is suspended, you cannot legally drive a motor vehicle.

  • WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A MISDEMEANOR AND A FELONY?


    The designations “petty misdemeanor”, “misdemeanor”, “gross misdemeanor”, and “felony” classify types of crimes by the seriousness of the offense. A petty misdemeanor is not a criminal matter and the least serious of all types of charges. Petty misdemeanors are not punishable with jail time, and if charged with one, a person is typically ordered to pay a fine. A misdemeanor is the next step up in severity. A person can be convicted of a misdemeanor and sentenced to jail and/or ordered to pay a fine. A gross misdemeanor carries even more significant weight, and can also result in jail time and/or a fine. A felony is the highest category of criminal offense, and…

  • I HAVE BEEN CHARGED WITH A CRIME AND I’M NOT SURE I CAN AFFORD A LAWYER. WHAT SHOULD I DO?


    The US Constitution provides that every person charged with a crime punishable by incarceration of 6 months or more is entitled to representation by an attorney (Individual state laws may entitle you to an attorney with even less jail-time on the table.) If you cannot afford an attorney, the court will appoint one for you, provided the court determines you qualify for such an appointment. In order to qualify for court-appointed counsel, you must first submit an application to the court.

  • WHAT IS A “RETAINER”? IS IT DIFFERENT FROM A “CONTINGENCY FEE”?


    There are many ways an attorney might charge a client for legal representation and work. These include retainer, flat fee, or contingency fee.

    A retainer fee is a sum of money paid by the client to the attorney up front before the attorney will begin working on the client’s case. This money is placed in an account that is separate from the attorney’s operating account, and then the attorney will bill their time against it as the case progresses. This should all be explained in a written retainer agreement, which your attorney should explain to you before you sign. This should state how you will be charged and what will happen if your retainer fee is reduced to zero before the case is completed.

    A flat fee is a single amount of money paid by the client in return for a single legal service performed by the attorney. This is usually used for legal work that will not require ongoing representation, i.e. a one-time event such as will-drafting or handling a real estate transaction.

    A contingency fee is a percentage of the “winnings” either awarded to the client by the court after a trial has occurred, or paid to the client from the defendant via settlement agreement. The attorney will not get paid unless the client wins the case. Typically, contingency fees are charged for a personal injury case, where a client is suing someone for a wrong against a client. Contingency fees are not allowed in certain kinds of proceedings, such as criminal defense or divorce representation. Attorney fees cannot be contingent upon any specific outcome in those types of proceedings.

RESOURCES & FORMS

How Do I Find a Lawyer?

From American Bar Association

How Do I Find a Lawyer?

From American Bar Association

Domestic Violence Protection Order

From State of North Dakota Courts

Registering a Foreign Judgment

From North Dakota Legal Self Help Center

Case Filing Statement

From South Dakota Unified Judicial System

Requesting Order of Expungement

From South Dakota Unified Judicial System

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GIVE US A CALL

If you’re a LegalShield member, don’t hesitate to reach out to us with questions. If you’re interested in becoming one, let’s talk! Call us at a number below to learn more about how to stay protected in life with LegalShield.

Minnesota

800-697-8955

North Dakota

800-506-7267

South Dakota

866-224-7232

Wisconsin

800-697-8960