When facing drug charges, it is scary. You know that, regardless of the outcome, you will be responsible for various fees and have to take time away from work. However, if convicted, the consequences can be much harsher: a conviction on one’s record, imprisonment and fines.

Even after release, the consequences likely do not stop as probation is usually ordered after release, which has ongoing expenses, potential penalties and various responsibilities. This is why when facing drug offenses, the search for a Kansas City, Missouri, attorney should begin immediately.

An attorney provided by the state

Generally, at the beginning of the process, everyone is assigned a public defender. Ask for an attorney immediately to make sure one is appointed as soon as humanly possible.

This attorney can help with the initial bail hearing and, hopefully, get you out of jail when you do not already have an attorney to call. However, this attorney is not mandatory, and for most people, a private attorney is a much better option.

Why not just stay with the public defender?

Two words: time and resources. Kansas City, Missouri, public defenders are overworked and underfunded. This means that those who keep their public defender often do not get the best defense possible. There are only so many hours in the day, and public defenders are routinely given more cases than any one attorney could possibly litigate.

Referrals

This is why most defendants look for outside counsel to ensure their case gets the individualized attention that it needs, and the first place to look is friends, family and even the public defender themselves. Ask around to see if anyone has an attorney who can successfully litigate their Missouri drug charges.

Online research

Of course, many friends and family members may give attorney referrals for attorneys not experienced with drug charges. This is where online research may be needed to find a local attorney with drug charge experience. Google, Yelp and a plethora of other online attorney search engines are available to help.

It is imperative to find a Kansas City, Missouri, attorney who is a criminal law attorney with experience with drug charges, and preferably in the court where you are charged. Every courthouse does things a bit differently, and judges can be wildly divergent on how they treat defendants. A local attorney with drug-charge experience will know the ins and outs of that courthouse and the judge on your case.