If you’re thinking about being a criminal lawyer, it’s unwise for you to only be concerned about the things that will help you get to the top of your career. There are a lot of mistakes that you may inadvertently do that can ultimately sabotage your legal profession. Here are some of the easiest ways that you can put your legal profession into jeopardy:


1. Being time unconscious.


The legal world is filled with so many deadlines whether you are filing a new case or making an appeal. While you may not have to face with deadlines on a daily basis, there will certainly be times when you’d have to pull all-nighters just to ensure that you have a document to hand in at court the next day. Judges and clerks in charge of receiving these documents are mandated by law to be strict when it comes to deadlines. It actually doesn’t matter if you’re a public defender or specializing in non-litigation practice, deadlines are strictly observed in the legal profession.


2. Slacking off.


If you’re looking for job which will allow you to check your Facebook account every thirty minutes or so from 9am to 5pm, then you can scratch out being a criminal lawyer from your list. Being an asset to your law firm is determined by the number of billable hours you’re putting in and most firms impose a minimum of hours that every lawyer must meet. Whether you’re thinking only about the bill part of the term billable hours or you’re really working hard towards being the best public defender you can be, you definitely wouldn’t have any time to play hookey.


3. Not valuing confidentiality.


Just like doctors are bound by ethics to uphold doctor-patient confidentiality, criminal lawyers are expected to keep their clients’ best interest at heart. And because public defenders are given access to sensitive information that involves their clients, confidentiality is a crucial and effective method of protecting any defendant. Consequently, a very easy way to make sure that you never find any client throughout your entire career is to simply divulge confidential information about someone you’re defending.


4. Failure to look professional.


The court of law is where intimidation is a legitimate game that lawyers play. But if you aren’t able to look the part, then don’t even expect to play the part. By the way that lawyers dress alone, it would be hard for you to judge which are good and which ones are so-so. No matter how competent you are as a criminal lawyer, a client will always pass you over if you dress sloppily.  

Sarah Rawson writes about various interesting topics on her blog. She features travel, pharmD programs, and degree in corrections.