Questions to Ask Your Parole Attorney
- November 22, 2022
- Parole, Parole Representation
- The Law Office of Greg Tsioros
- Comments Off on Questions to Ask Your Parole Attorney
Hiring an attorney to help with the parole process can significantly impact your success of release from prison. Like anyone you hire, you should do your research to make sure you feel comfortable with the lawyer under consideration.
Here are the benefits of hiring a parole attorney, when you should begin seeking help, and what to ask them, so you know you chose the right person for the job.
Benefits of Hiring a Parole Attorney
Like all legal processes, the parole process is complicated, and most people don’t know what’s involved. Preparing for parole on your own, from inside prison, is a challenge, even if a loved one is trying to help.
If you hire a parole attorney, you could cut your time in prison in half. A legal professional familiar with the parole process and requirements can guide you to classes, service programs, and other activities that can count toward good time credit. They can even help you focus on the appropriate behavior inside.
Your parole attorney doesn’t need to be the same one who represented you at your criminal trial or sentencing hearing. However, if that lawyer has a background in parole proceedings and you prefer someone you know, ask them if they can represent you for parole.
A parole attorney also helps you create a thorough parole packet. This critical element can sway the Parole Board when done correctly and well. You want to give the Board as many reasons as possible to grant parole.
Your lawyer ensures the packet is complete, contains all the required documentation, and gets submitted on time. They can also help you with presentation and get the Board to see you as a person, not a number.
Your parole attorney:
- Convinces the Board you earned the right to parole
- Shows the Board you won’t pose harm to the community if released
- Demonstrates to the Board you have friends and family to support you
- Provides your well-considered plan for living crime-free after release
That’s a tall order, but an experienced parole lawyer will be up to the challenge.
The Best Time to Hire a Parole Attorney
You have several options for the timely hiring of a parole attorney:
- When parole approaches
- When a parole hearing is imminent
- When parole is denied
- When parole is approved
- When you are accused of violating parole
Let’s take these points one by one.
The best time to hire a parole attorney is when you know that your chance of parole approaches. A parole lawyer can help you start your journey, even if parole is months or years away. Hiring early gives you time to learn the process and the factors the Parole Board considers, and it also provides time to learn how to present yourself.
A parole lawyer guides you in the steps needed to improve your chances of parole, such as:
- Good behavior
- Taking educational course
- Earning your GED
- Attending substance abuse meetings
If you wait until the parole hearing is imminent, you have little time to take classes or show good behavior. Still, you can put together a compelling parole packet. Your parole attorney helps secure reference letters, proof of residency outside of prison, and proof of employment once you are released.
You can also work on how to answer questions during the interview.
If you had a parole hearing and were denied or not granted parole, you need a parole attorney immediately. Sometimes ten years pass before your next parole hearing. However, after each denial, you should have access to a review after a year.
A parole lawyer is critical if the denial is due to an improperly prepared parole packet.
Yes, you should even have a parole attorney if your parole is granted because parole is conditional. You need to follow the restrictions and regulations to stay out of prison, and your lawyer can help you understand those requirements and the terms of your release.
A parole attorney also helps if you are falsely accused of violating parole.
If you are accused of violating parole, you definitely need a parole attorney because nearly 20% of all inmates currently incarcerated are in prison for a parole violation. It’s unlikely the Parole Board will listen to you or take your side. And you can’t just say you didn’t understand the terms of your release.
Your attorney can find evidence of your innocence and keep you from going back.
What to Ask Your Parole Attorney Before Hiring
Ask the following questions to determine if the person under consideration is suitable for your case.
- How long have you performed parole work?
- Do you personally visit the inmate in their unit?
- Do you present the case personally to the Parole Board?
- Do you have a written legal service agreement?
- How do you analyze your parole cases?
- Do you prepare a parole packet for the inmate?
- How do you learn about the inmate’s background and case?
- Do you make any promises or guarantees about the outcome of my case?
That last question is crucial. Any attorney who makes promises or guarantees of your case’s outcome is acting unethically. There are too many variables for anyone to make those promises.
If you know anyone else that has been granted parole with the help of a parole attorney, ask if they recommend working with their attorney. You can also read reviews online to see what parolees have to say about working with different attorneys.
After Your Consultation
As you make your choice, consider these questions after speaking with your candidate attorney.
- Did the attorney take the time to ask detailed, insightful questions to get enough information to answer questions?
- Did they explain the parole process to you?
- Did you feel comfortable talking with them?
- Did they tell you how they approach the work, or did they just throw out meaningless numbers like win percentages?
You want someone who is honest and straightforward about your case and has a good grasp of the parole process in Texas. You don’t want someone who only cares about showing off their previous success because every case is unique. You want to know what the attorney can do for you — it won’t be the same as what they did for someone else.
Hire a Parole Attorney
From the moment you are incarcerated, you should prepare for parole. Consulting a parole attorney increases your chances substantially, and the earlier you start, the higher your chances rise.
An experienced parole attorney can help you convince the Parole Board that you are reformed, have a place to live and work, and have the support of family and friends. Even if the Board grants parole, there is still value in hiring a parole attorney to ensure you stay out of prison.
If you are looking for parole representation in Texas, Greg Tsioros has the experience and knowledge you need on your side.