If you’re arrested for a misdemeanor criminal offense in Harris County, you’ll probably get dozens of letters from “lawyers” offering to represent you for as little as $50. Don’t be fooled.
Misdemeanor Convictions Count
Misdemeanors are serious, with a multitude of harsh consequences which we’ve outlined below.
First, a misdemeanor charge can remain on your public record forever. In the age of internet searches, this affects how everyone — not only potential landlords and employers, but also potential mates and business partners — views you.
If your reputation is precious to you, call us at 713-224-1747 to discuss representation.
Employment & Housing
People with misdemeanor convictions (which includes deferred-adjudication probations) often have trouble getting jobs and renting apartments. In fact, some communities won’t approve your application or allow you to take up residency if you have a criminal record.
Misdemeanor convictions for offenses involving dishonesty (“moral turpitude”) and violence are used by government agencies to deny people occupational licenses (for example, nursing or private investigation licenses) and concealed-handgun licenses.
A misdemeanor conviction may bar a non-citizen from entering or remaining in the country or from becoming a citizen.
Future Charges & Enhancements
A misdemeanor conviction may also make you a sitting duck for future unfounded charges for two reasons: First, when the police encounter you and see that you have a misdemeanor conviction, they treat you as a criminal rather than a citizen, and they are more likely to find something else to charge you with; and second, because that misdemeanor conviction may be used to enhance the seriousness of future charges.
For example, if you’re convicted of, or take deferred-adjudication probation for a misdemeanor family violence assault and charged with another family violence assault, the second one is a felony. This is known as a criminal enhancement.
All of this is aside from the potential of a fine, jail sentence, or government supervision in the form of probation.
Need Help? Call Atty Mark W. Bennett
Because of the serious consequences that can result from misdemeanor convictions (we’ll say it again: including deferred adjudication probations), we treat misdemeanor cases as seriously as we treat felonies, and prepare to defend the misdemeanors as though our clients are facing prison.
Our fees on such cases are of course not cheap. Fees depend, as always, on many factors, but you can be sure that a thorough defense of a misdemeanor case will cost you substantially more than $50.
If you would like to schedule an appointment to meet with Mark, call our office by phone at 713-224-1747. Houston criminal-defense attorney Mark Bennett has practiced law since 1995, is Board Certified® in Criminal Law per the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, and is a respected Houston appeals lawyer.
We’ll listen to your side of the story when you walk into our office. We will also be truthful about whether we believe we can win, can’t win, or can or can’t take on your case.