Telephone: 202-318-3761

What Is a Federal Criminal
Lawyer, and When Do You
Need One?

When facing accusations of committing a crime that breaks the United States’ laws, you will need an experienced federal criminal lawyer to help you avoid steep fines or prison time.
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What Is a Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer?

If you are being charged by federal authorities, it’s in your best interest to hire a federal lawyer as quickly as possible. Perhaps you made a mistake that you regret or perhaps merely got caught up in the misdeeds of another. Maybe you did not participate in criminal behavior or participated unwittingly.

Whatever the reason you are being accused of a federal crime or white-collar crime, you should not attempt to handle your defense yourself. The federal criminal law is complicated, and criminal defense lawyers with experience at the federal level are best equipped to present a winning argument.

Attorney Jay P. Mykytiuk of Scrofano Law PC is a Virginia and Washington DC criminal defense lawyer with experience defending white-collar criminals, along with other federal offenses.


What Does a Federal Defense Attorney Do?

If you have been accused of a federal crime, your case will be heard at a Federal District Court and overseen by a United States District Judge or a Federal Magistrate Judge. Cases decided by the district court can later be appealed in a United States Court of Appeals, located at a Circuit Court.

Federal criminal cases are characteristic because potential sentences for most cases are outlined in the Federal Sentencing Guidelines. The criminal history of the individual who was accused of committing the crime and the seriousness of the offense are taken into consideration in sentencing guidelines.

While these sentencing guidelines establish minimum and maximum time of potential prison sentence for federal crimes, they are not binding. A federal judge may choose to depart from the guidelines when determining the penalty.

However, certain offenses carry mandatory minimum penalties that can result in a lengthy sentence in federal prison.

Criminal cases heard at this level are typically very serious. A federal defense attorney can explain your options and prepare your best possible defense. They can also advise on whether or not to pursue an appeal, and how best to go about doing it.

There are considerable distinctions between dealing with charges in state and federal court, so if you are facing a federal crime, you want an attorney with federal experience. Jay P. Mykitiuk is a Virginia and D.C. criminal defense attorney with a track record in the federal court system. He and the Scrofano law team can help you defend your rights during any federal cases.


Federal Criminal Defense Attorney

A federal criminal defense attorney can provide advice and represent you in court if you are accused of a federal crime in Washington DC. Most white-collar crimes are tried at the federal level, but other crimes heard in these courts include:

  • Computer crimes
  • Counterfeiting
  • Drug trafficking
  • Federal drug offenses
  • Federal sex crimes
  • Money laundering
  • Treason
  • Violation of interstate commerce
  • Violation of security laws
  • Violent crimes
  • Weapons charges
  • White-collar federal crimes

If you are arrested for any of these crimes, be sure you are aware of what not to do when arrested in the District of Columbia.

After an arrest, the defendant will likely be arraigned. That is when you’ll learn what federal law charges you will be up against. If no plea agreement is reached with the federal prosecutor, the trial date will be set.

The federal criminal process can be confusing and frightening, especially for those who have no experience with the federal criminal justice system. Our federal defense lawyers are familiar with the whole process, judges, and the federal courts, and we will strive to obtain the best possible outcome for your case.

Why Might You Need a Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer?

Federal crimes occur when an individual violates federal law or commits a crime on federal property, while state criminal cases deal with individuals who violated state laws.

Thus, a federal criminal investigation is much different than an investigation and cases handled before state courts. For example, law enforcement agencies that investigate federal crimes have highly skilled investigators and agents responsible for conducting federal investigations.

Those facing federal criminal charges should be aware of the fact that federal criminal investigations last for months and even longer before criminal charges are even filed. That also means federal criminal defense lawyers have a lot of catching up to do when hired to defend charged individuals.

Since the federal government and federal prosecutors who are conducting federal criminal trials have practically unlimited resources to pursue a case, hiring a federal defense lawyer is necessary for creating a defense strategy focused on protecting your rights and overcoming the allegations.

If you are arrested for any of the offenses listed above or even suspect that you are under investigation, you most likely need a federal criminal defense lawyer.

Your federal case or the investigation can continue rapidly, and a lawyer will be able to advise you what to do and not to do in order to have the best chance at avoiding hefty federal criminal penalties. Quick intervention by a legal professional can be vital to your freedom.


A Federal Criminal Attorney Can Help

Among the primary goals of a federal attorney is to help you avoid or reduce the following penalties:

  • Federal jail time
  • Fines
  • Probation
  • Restitution

To learn more about how to set yourself up for success, even in the face of federal charges, check out this article on your right to remain silent.

Working with Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys

DC Federal Criminal Lawyers will provide skilled legal representation if you have been accused of a white-collar crime or various other crimes at the federal level.


How Much Does a Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer Cost?

If you are wondering how much a federal criminal defense lawyer costs, it depends on the expense of various things, such as:

  • Capability
  • Credentials
  • Experience

The particulars of the case like whether it is your first offense and how complex the case is will also affect the expense.


Defending Federal Criminal Cases

When you are dealing with a federal criminal case, an attorney in Washington DC will develop and perform a custom-tailored defense technique to help you avoid the possibility of a conviction at trial.

At Scrofano Law PC, we work hard to level the playing field when it feels like it’s you against the world. Call 202-318-3761 or contact attorney Jay P. Mykitiuk via our online form today to schedule a confidential case assessment and discover how we can make justice work for you rather than against you.


We fight for your rights!

Lindsey Barthel

I couldn’t have had a better experience with legal counsel. Jay handled two cases simultaneously for me with the upmost professionalism and respect for myself as a client. He was very prompt in communication answering any questions I had, provided clear steps regarding each phase of the cases, and gave his undivided attention while meeting with me. He conducts himself very well in the courtroom as well as having an amazing firm/ staff behind him. I’d recommend anyone to Jay Mykytuik!

Yesica Reyes

Great law firm. Very responsive from the start, always available. Jay is a very knowledgeable attorney, attentive, determined and handled my husband case with great professionalism and with the best interest. Thank you! We highly recommend attorney Jay.

Elona Krypa

Jay is the best attorney I have ever worked with. From our first meeting, he explained everything to me in terms I could easily understand and was extremely professional, knowledgeable and responsive. Jay did a great job with my case and made me feel secured. I would highly recommend him.

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