Interviewer: What do you believe that you bring to the table that other attorneys don’t?
Tom Chaves: I get to know the clients very well, I give the clients my cell phone number and they can reach me with fairly flexible hours.
Being Accessible to a Client at All Times is an Exemplary Trait for a Defense Attorney
People frequently will call me at night, people call me over the weekend, I am very easily reachable, which for a lawyer in general and especially in the criminal defense field is unusual because many lawyers have screening systems or are difficult to get a hold of or generally don’t return phone calls quickly. I make a point that I guarantee all my clients that I will return their phone calls within one day, meaning the same day not next day; absent some very unusual circumstance. So, I think that in itself sets me apart from most of the other lawyers that do criminal defense work.
Common Client Apprehensions on Retaining an Attorney for a Criminal Defense Case
Interviewer: What reservations or fears do you think people have about working with you or with any lawyer and what do you think people like to believe or what they tend to believe?
Tom Chaves: Many clients have preconceived notions of what a case means, how it’ll be handled in the court system and what the outcome will be. So, for example, they may feel that the case will be treated in a certain way that it will be treated very harshly or conversely that it will be treated in a lenient way.
It is the Duty of an Attorney to Dispel Any Apprehensions or Misconceptions that a Client May Have
It’s up to lawyer to convince clients to have confidence so that they know 100 per cent what exactly is occurring with their case while it’s occurring. So, in other words, when the lawyer first meets with the client, the lawyer explains to the client exactly what the process is going to be, how it works and based on the information the client gives to the lawyer in the first meeting to develop a strategy and a plan of action to best defend the case, obviously as the case unfolds and discoveries provided by the prosecutor’s office, then that’s when the real work starts but it’s a process in which the client needs to be informed of each and every step at the way.