Who’s The Best New Jersey Criminal Lawyer For You?

best new jersey criminal lawyer

It’s a daily question: “I’m looking for the best New Jersey criminal lawyer. Are you the best?” They ask because either they or their loved one has been arrested, and they want the absolute best New Jersey criminal lawyer to represent them.

Think of Marriage

When I am asked who the best New Jersey criminal lawyer is, I ask a question of my own: “Who is the best person for you to marry?” Then I push even further: “When you want to marry somebody, what are you looking for in that person?” People usually respond by saying, “I want a person who is respectful, honest, loyal, courteous …” Then I ask: “Do you want to marry someone who is arrogant? Condescending? Rude?” The answer is always ‘no.’

This takes us back to our original question: Who’s the best New Jersey criminal lawyer for you? The answer depends on what you want in a lawyer. Do you want someone who is honest? Hard working? Respectful? Returns your phone calls? Passionate about your case? Or do you want someone who never has time for you? Is condescending or arrogant?

Here are a few tips for things to look for when seeking the best New Jersey criminal lawyer for you.

#1: How will the best New Jersey criminal lawyer make you feel?

Most attorneys offer free consultations. During this consultation, go with your initial gut reaction. How does the attorney make you feel? If you have to wait, do they sincerely apologize for the wait? Do they shake your hand and look you in the eye? Are they patient with you?

and think about this...

Do they give you time to explain your side of the story? Does the attorney listen or constantly interrupt you? That’s a red flag. This is how it will be for the duration of your case, and criminal cases can go on for months and sometimes even years! The best New Jersey criminal lawyer will listen and speak to you with patience and understanding, not make you feel that you are wasting his/her time.

#2: How does the lawyer respond to your questions?

The second thing to look for when finding the best New Jersey criminal lawyer is how the attorney responds to your questions.

The law can be complicated and is filled with “lawyer-speak” – sophisticated words that only lawyers use and understand. Throughout your case, there will be confusing terms, procedures, and situations. You have to participate in your own defense, so you need to understand what is happening and why. The only way you can make an intelligent decision regarding your defense is if your attorney clearly explains things to you.

No question is stupid

There’s a Chinese proverb I learned as a kid: “If you ask a stupid question, you look like a fool for a few minutes. If you don’t ask the stupid question, you’ll be a fool for life.” The way I work – and the way you should expect the best New Jersey criminal lawyer to work – is with the mindset that there are no stupid questions, and you can ask me the same thing as often as you need to.

If your attorney doesn’t make time to respond to your questions, I have to take you back to my first question: Do you want a husband or wife who treats you like that? Your need to fully understand every aspect of your defense. This is something the best New Jersey criminal lawyer will make a priority.

#3: Does the lawyer make you feel rushed?

This is critical. In your criminal defense, there are no gametime decisions. What do I mean by that? Your criminal case is not a basketball game with three seconds left on the clock and your shot wins or loses the game.

Judges are fair; they give us time to make decisions. Prosecutors are also fair. They offer a plea bargain and give us time to decide. It could be two weeks or 30 days, but you should never have to make a critical life decision under pressure.

If your attorney demands your answer right away, that is another red flag because he/she has not been communicating with you during the time leading up to that decision. The best New Jersey criminal lawyer will give you time to make a decision. That lawyer will explain what happens based on the choices you have. Be wary if you feel rushed during the initial consultation.

#4: Will the lawyer be passionate about your case?

Passion is important. Does the attorney you are talking with have passion for what he/she does? The people who are best at their craft wake up just loving what they do. If you feel like the attorney you are speaking with doesn’t seem to care, you may want to re-think your decision.

In finding the best New Jersey criminal lawyer for you, you need someone who is passionate. When they go to court, they’re fighting for you; when they’re speaking to the prosecutor, they’re arguing for you. That passion has to spill over in every area of your case.

#5: How does the best New jersey criminal lawyer rank with former clients?

When you’re looking for the best New Jersey criminal lawyer, here’s an important tip: Do your research. What have prior clients said in online reviews? Hint: See if different people say different things in a positive way about the same person. This way you will know if the review is genuine. 

Avoid reviews that are superficial: “He did a great job.” “Highly recommend.” These, in my opinion, are suspicious. Look for detailed reviews where the person is explaining a little about their case. This gives credibility to their review. You may want to call this attorney and arrange a consultation because you may have just found the best New Jersey criminal lawyer for you.

#6: What is the lawyer’s communication policy?

During your initial consultation, ask how often you can contact the lawyer and how he/she responds, whether by email or phone call. Remember, every step of the way there will be developments in your case — a new schedule, a new court date, some legal procedural thing that has to be filed, etc. If your attorney is not keeping you updated, you will keep calling your attorney’s office.

We have an open-door policy. Clients will call to ask what is going to happen, when the court date is, what time they should be there. They can call multiple times a day. They can come to our office. They can email. We are here to help, so we do not get tired of the calls, and we do not charge for every phone call, email, or office visit.

#7: Will this lawyer be the one working on your case?

Every tip you’ve been given so far is important, but this one needs to be underlined and bolded with an exclamation point! Ask the attorney you are thinking to hire if he/she will be the one who goes with you to court.

Why is this important? At some firms you will meet the head attorney, the one whose name is on the website, and feel comfortable entering a long-term relationship with him/her. But the reality is, this attorney may not be the one assigned to your case. When you sign on with the best New Jersey criminal lawyer, that attorney will be with you every step of the way.

#8: What is the lawyer’s fee structure?

Now we’re ready to wrap things up. You think you have identified the best New Jersey criminal lawyer there is. You have a good gut feeling. Here’s the final question before you sign the contract or retainer agreement: What is the fee structure? How will you be charged?

In New Jersey, we have two simple ways of engaging a client. The first is hourly. Attorneys can charge $300+ an hour. So every time you call, email, go to court, every time the attorney researches your case or speaks to the prosecutor, you will be billed by the hour. You can rack up huge legal fees very quickly without even knowing it.

The second type of structure is a flat fee. This means that for your entire case, you only pay one price. That’s how the best New Jersey criminal lawyer will work! Whether your case takes one month or one year, whether we spend 10 hours or 100 hours, you only pay one fee.

To sum up...

We’ve gone through some important things to look for when you are looking for the best New Jersey criminal lawyer. Think on these things, and if you have any questions, give us a call. I wish you the very best! God bless!

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How We Can Help

Regardless of the criminal charges you are facing, we are here to defend & protect you. Whether you are facing a restraining order, drug charge, theft charge, or aggravated assault charge, we are here to help you. Even a DWI case can really complicate your life.

If we can’t get your charges dismissed, we can either get them downgraded or place you in a diversionary program. The point is, our criminal defense lawyers will fight tirelessly to get you the best result possible. Take advantage of our free consultation to see how we can help.

Our Experience

You or a loved one have been arrested. Understandably, you are terrified & have a lot of questions. You’ve heard about plea bargains & probation, but the process is overwhelming. You want a local attorney near you to represent you.

Mr. Peyrouton is from Ridgewood & handles all types of criminal matters in New Jersey The New Jersey Law Journal recently published one of his articles on the subject of criminal law.

Our Practice Areas

Below you will find some but not all of our practice areas. Of course, if you do not see your criminal charges listed, feel free to contact us for a free consultation. We will meet with you to discuss your case & to answer all of your legal concerns. Se habla español tambien!

Areas We Serve

Get Help With Your Case

How Do Your Free Consultations Work?

There are plenty of excellent Hackensack criminal lawyers in our area. Most, if not all of them, offer free, 20-minute, consultations. However, our free consultations do not have a time limit. You will never feel rushed.

The best way for us to help you is to patiently listen to your side of the story. Your version of events will serve as the basis for your legal defense. It is during these initial meetings that your memory of the event is fresh in your mind. Why we would rush you during such an important aspect of your case.

We understand that your choice of attorney could mean the difference between your freedom and spending years behind bars. 

When you hire an attorney, you are entering a long-term relationship. For this reason, it is important that you feel comfortable with the team of Hackensack criminal lawyers that will represent you.

What our clients say about us

Peyrouton Law
Based on 141 reviews
17:00 17 Feb 21
23:01 15 Feb 21
So far so good....no complaints here...Very good people
17:41 11 Feb 21
I recently got into some legal trouble and was in the need of an attorney fast. Choosing a good attorney, is step 1 in achieving a favorable outcome in any case. And thankfully I made the right choice in choosing Peyrouton Law. Allan and his team are great. They set my mind at ease and they were there with me every step of the way. Allan and Samera always made themselves available for any questions or concerns I had and worked very hard to get me the best possible outcome in my case. They were very affordable and their service far exceeded the price. Thank you Peyrouton Law!
Nikki Pergaminos
Nikki Pergaminos
22:33 10 Feb 21
Mr. Peyrouton has been my attorney for the last ten years. He is very knowledgeable and has always been accessible. I am proud to know him and have him as my lawyer.
Erin Marrero
Erin Marrero
19:54 10 Feb 21
Super Helpful!!A few months ago my husband and I received a BOGUS! speed ticket. Came here explaining our situation long story short ! The ticket was dismissed and I would definitely recommend to anyone seeking professional help.
01:44 10 Feb 21
Joy Alarcon
Joy Alarcon
01:39 10 Feb 21
Recently I had a need for a criminal attorney and I hired Peyrouton Law Firm. This was a very stressful situation for me to go through however the entire time I had great service and quick response from this law firm. I received exceptional service also from Samera of their legal team/ paralegal staff.She provided me with steps of the entire process and gave me information to put me at ease. Thankfully my issue is resolved now and I am recommending them to all of my friends and family.
johon cano
johon cano
01:10 10 Feb 21
I had got myself into some serious trouble with criminal charges and was going to lose my awesome job because you cant have a criminal conviction on your record at my job.First I went to some jersey city lawyer who treated me horribly and tried to scare me into paying an inflated fee! my mom was with me and he was even rude to her because she has an accent.We left his office and googled more lawyersWe got really lucky when we found Alan.The guy is so awesome!He fought for me at a third of the price of the other lawyer and I was able to keep my job.He's a gentleman fighter and I totally recommend him.
Madelyn Abdalla
Madelyn Abdalla
00:40 10 Feb 21
Last year was such a difficult year for all of us with the rise of Covid-19 and the pandemic. Most businesses and the Courts were closed for months! If you had a legal matter pending during that time...trying to speak to a live person at the Court to get information or questions answered was nearly impossible! So I finally decided to hire an attorney to help! Alan and Samera are such an amazing team. They took my case and started working on it from day one! They constantly corresponded with the Court through fax and email to stay on top of my case. They made several calls throughout the day and did not stop until someone picked up or called back with information on my case. They always kept me updated and were always so nice to me. My case was over a year old and nothing was being done. As soon as I hired Alan, it was closed within 3 months!!! I'm speechless. Thank you both for doing such great work and for being so diligent. And the result was the icing on the cake! God bless and stay safe.
00:03 10 Feb 21
Thank you Alan for saving the day...again! Lol From criminal cases to traffic tickets to immigration issues etc...you always come through for me! And you always get the best results! I wish you more and more success! You'll always have me as a client and as a referral!

A person extorts if he purposely threatens to:

a. Inflict bodily injury on or physically confine or restrain anyone or commit any other criminal offense;
b. Accuse anyone of an offense or cause charges of an offense to be instituted against any person;
c. Expose or publicize any secret or any asserted fact, whether true or false, tending to subject any person to hatred, contempt or ridicule, or to impair his credit or business repute;
d. Take or withhold action as an official, or cause an official to take or withhold action;
e. Bring about or continue a strike, boycott or other collective action, if the property is not demanded or received for the benefit of the group in whose interest the actor purports to act;
f. Testify or provide information or withhold testimony or information with respect to another’s legal claim or defense; or
g. Inflict any other harm which would not substantially benefit the actor but which is calculated to materially harm another person.

***It is an affirmative defense to prosecution based on paragraphs b, c, d or f that the property obtained was honestly claimed as restitution or indemnification for harm done in the circumstances or as lawful compensation for property or services.

Reasonable Articulable Suspicion

Reasonable suspicion is a “search” standard that applies in criminal law.

When a police officer conducts a warrantless search, and does not have probable cause to justify the search, the courts look to see if the police had
a “reasonable & articulable suspicion” for the search.

A mere “hunch” is not enough.

In other words, a police officer has to provide an acceptable explanation for the search.

United States Constitution

Amendment IV

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

NJSA - 2C:43-7.2.
Eligibility for parole;
persons convicted of certain violent crimes

a. A court imposing a sentence of incarceration for a crime of the first or second degree enumerated in subsection d. of this section shall fix a minimum term of 85% of the sentence imposed, during which the defendant shall not be eligible for parole.

b. The minimum term required by subsection a. of this section shall be fixed as a part of every sentence of incarceration imposed upon every conviction of a crime enumerated in subsection d. of this section, whether the sentence of incarceration is determined pursuant to N.J.S.2C:43-6, N.J.S.2C:43-7, N.J.S.2C:11-3 or any other provision of law, and shall be calculated based upon the sentence of incarceration actually imposed. The provisions of subsection a. of this section shall not be construed or applied to reduce the time that must be served before eligibility for parole by an inmate sentenced to a mandatory minimum period of incarceration. Solely for the purpose of calculating the minimum term of parole ineligibility pursuant to subsection a. of this section, a sentence of life imprisonment shall be deemed to be 75 years.

c. Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary and in addition to any other sentence imposed, a court imposing a minimum period of parole ineligibility of 85 percent of the sentence pursuant to this section shall also impose a five-year term of parole supervision if the defendant is being sentenced for a crime of the first degree, or a three-year term of parole supervision if the defendant is being sentenced for a crime of the second degree. The term of parole supervision shall commence upon the completion of the sentence of incarceration imposed by the court pursuant to subsection a. of this section unless the defendant is serving a sentence of incarceration for another crime at the time he completes the sentence of incarceration imposed pursuant to subsection a., in which case the term of parole supervision shall commence immediately upon the defendant’s release from incarceration. During the term of parole supervision the defendant shall remain in release status in the community in the legal custody of the Commissioner of the Department of Corrections and shall be supervised by the State Parole Board as if on parole and shall be subject to the provisions and conditions

Felony Degree

Prison & Fines



1st-degree felony charges in NJ are reserved for the most serious criminal offenses. Prison terms start at a minimum of 10 years in prison.


2nd-degree felony charges carry 5-10 yrs in prison.
These charges can often be “downgraded” to 3rd or 4th-degree crimes.


3rd-degree felony charges carry 3-5 years.
You have a good shot at PTI if you are charged with a 3rd-degree.


4th-degree felony charges carry up to 18 months in jail. These cases can get “remanded” to a lower court. In this way, you will be out of “felony” danger.