Guide to Finding Federal Lawyer
What is a Federal Lawyer?
A federal lawyer is an attorney who practices law in the federal court system. Under Article III of the Constitution the Congress has the right to create the federal court system. Congress may limit or grant jurisdiction to the federal courts as it deems fit, but under ex Parte Mcardle, Congress may not take away all jurisdiction to hear a particular type of case or controversy.
A federal lawyer takes on all types of cases involving litigation in the federal courts. This includes criminal defense in prosecution by the federal government and litigation of civil claims. In order to file a complaint in a federal court a case must be one of two kinds. It can be either a civil suit against a government official; or it must be a lawsuit between parties who are diverse, as in from different states, and the damages sought are in excess of $75,000.
In order to practice law in a federal court a federal lawyer must be barred, not only by a state or the District of Columbia, but he, or she, must also be barred in the federal district where he or she will be practicing federal law. For example, if a federal lawyer is going to litigate in a federal court in Manhattan he, or she, must be barred in the Southern District of New York.
The Erie Doctrine applies to litigation in federal courts. Under the Erie doctrine, the federal court, under a case involving diversity jurisdiction, will follow the federal rules of procedure but will adopt the substantive rules of the state. The more complex issue is deciding which state substantive law to adopt. This is called choice of law and there are entire classes in law school devoted to this subject alone.
One of the nuances of the Erie Doctrine is that the federal courts will not let you run around the statute of limitations period. If you are contemplating bringing a case in your state court but you find that the statute of limitations has expired you think that you can circumvent the system by filing in federal court, thinking that the federal court will adopt the statute of limitations of the other state with the longer statute of limitations, this may not always be the case. The Erie Doctrine was created, in large, part to deter forum shopping to take advantage of favorable statutes of limitations.
Why do I need a federal lawyer?
If you are being brought up on federal criminal charges you will definitely need a federal lawyer. Federal law can be completely different from state law and your normal attorney will not be prepared to argue in front of a District Court judge. The federal courts have their own substantive laws as well as their own procedural rules including strict compliance with filing, composition of complaints, answers, and other procedural rules. A federal lawyer will be able to represent you in charges brought by the United States government competently and vigilantly.
Another reason to have a federal lawyer is that when you have the option of litigating a civil claim in a federal court it may be a benefit or detriment to you. If your claim is against an individual in another state and it is for more than$75,000 you have the option of litigating in either federal or state court. Your federal lawyer will be able to analyze the pros and cons of both of these situations. Depending on the matter involved your federal lawyer may find that litigating in a state court may give you a better chance of success or higher damage awards. In the alternative, if the state has a cap on damages you may be better off litigating in federal court.
Your federal lawyer should have extensive knowledge of choice of law rules and how to apply them favorably to your case. Even if you find that it will be more favorable for you to litigate in federal court, as opposed to bringing a claim in state court, you may still subject yourself to substantive laws that are not in your favor because you did not understand the choice of law rules. Choice of law rules are very complex and it is easy to interpret them in one way, only to find out after you file your claim, that you were wrong and a different states substantive laws will be adopted by the court. Your federal lawyer will make sure that these occurrences don’t happen because often they are the difference between winning and losing your case.
How do I find a federal lawyer?
When you’re looking for a federal lawyer you want to keep a number of things in mind. First, it is not only required that your federal lawyer be barred in the district court that you are looking to litigate your federal claim; it is also important that your federal lawyer be barred, and in good standing in your state as well. Part of the benefit of having the option of litigating in federal court is that you can take advantage of the federal laws that may be beneficial to your case. If your federal lawyer is not barred in the state then the federal lawyer will not be able help you if you decide that state court is a better option.
You will also want to make sure that your federal lawyer is within the vicinity of the federal court that you will be litigating in. There are 94 federal district courts in the United States and 12 Appellate courts that are broken up into federal circuits. Your federal lawyer should, at the very least be barred in the federal district court where you want to litigate and should also be barred in the federal circuit that your case may go to in the case of an appeal.
Rates & Fees
Depending on what kind of case you are litigating in federal court you will be subjected to different forms of attorney’s fees. If you are defending against federal criminal charges your federal lawyer will charge an expensive flat fee and possibly an hourly fee. If it is a contract case based on diversity jurisdiction the federal lawyer will charge an hourly fee. If you are a plaintiff in a diversity tort case seeking money damages then the federal lawyer will usually charge on a contingency fee basis. Overall, federal lawyers will be more expensive than lawyers who just practice state law.
Federal Crimes Lawyer
Federal crimes lawyers litigate on behalf of individuals charged with federal crimes in a federal district court. Federal crimes are those that are brought for violation of a federal law and include drug violation, IRS violations, and many more. A federal crimes lawyer should be barred, not only by a state of the Union, but must also be barred in the district court where the case may be litigated. There are 94 district courts in the United States including the federal claims court and the district court for the federal circuit located in Washington, D.C.
Federal Crimes Lawyer Los Angeles
If you are being prosecuted for by the federal government for you may need federal crimes lawyers. Los Angeles federal crimes lawyers can be found through the California Bar Associations referral service. Federal Crimes in the in the city of Los Angeles are brought in the United States District Court for the Central District of California. In order to practice in the the Central District of California you must first find out if your lawyer can practice in the jurisdiction. Federal Crimes lawyers of Los Angeles must not only be barred in the State of California but also be barred, and able to practice law, in The United States District Court for the Central District of California.