Myself I am very law abiding citizen and never was approached by police in the 20+ years that I am in America. But in this never talk to police video they claim that innocent people went to prison because they talked to police without a lawyer present.

That kind of bothers me. Should I retain a criminal lawyer advance just in case that I am that situation? is this something that people do? How would I go about doing it?

Also, how do I pay for this in advance considering that the event is unlikely to ever happen?

  • 1
    *Retain, not "retrain"
    – Ron Beyer
    Jan 31, 2021 at 18:20

2 Answers 2


You don't need to have an existing relationship with a lawyer to refuse to talk to the police. You can tell the police you want a lawyer before answering questions. Generally speaking, this should result in the police leaving you alone, giving you time to reach out to an attorney on your own timeline.

This is of course a bit more complicated if you've already been arrested, but in most cases, you'll still be able to make calls out of jail to try to find a lawyer. If you have serious concerns about this kind of situation, having an attorney on retainer would be a good idea.

The business end of the transaction is fairly simple. You would likely sign an engagement agreement with the lawyer in which you agree to pay a modest sum -- $500 or $1,000, imagine, and the lawyer would agree to take your calls when they come in and swoop in to deal with the police as necessary. The lawyer would be required to place your money in a trust account and not touch it until you call him to use his services.

If you're expecting the lawyer to go further by actually appearing in court for you, filing motions, defending you at trial, etc., the retainer would likely be substantially higher.


Based on what you've said (which is that you're not being investigated or prosecuted for a crime, you just saw the youtube video), you don't need to have a criminal defense lawyer on retainer. Indeed, the kind of criminal defense lawyer who would say "yeah! I'd be happy to be on retainer for you, just pay me $XXX," is exactly the kind of lawyer you don't want to hire!

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