Careers In Criminal Justice

About Criminal Justice

Criminal justice is one of the most interesting career options to explore as it deals with criminal psychology and the social implications, including its influence on the criminals. Highly evolving and dynamic at the same time, the field offers a number of areas of specialization. Starting from the forms of social justice to methods of committing crimes, everything has undergone a sea of change. Laws have changed, new philosophies have emerged, and new techniques of advocacy and forms of punishments have been brought into practice. Therefore, a career in criminal justice requires the right kind of educational background, adequate training, and a mind and attitude to evolve with time while maintaining the basic standards of law and order. Practitioners of criminal justice are, therefore, expected to gather expertise in administration, law enforcement, forensics, criminal psychology, and sociology.

Careers in Criminal Justice

Students holding criminal justice degrees can explore a lot of areas related to justice and law including police investigator, defender, prosecutor, judge, and administrator. Jobs in criminal justice may also include prison guard, security guard, and probationary officers. Employers often favor candidates with a background in sociology, psychology, criminology, law, social work, or political science, during the selection process. However, before opting for a career in criminal justice, it is important to remember that it is not enough to learn about general laws and enforcement techniques. Specialization is important to develop a specific career path.

Joining a police force as a police officer or working as an agent for the Secret Service, FBI or Homeland Security are some of the popular choices often made by students of criminal justice. The job of evidence experts, criminal profilers, and crime scene investigators are some of the other interesting and challenging careers offered in the fields of crime, law, and justice. These profiles are particularly preferred by those who love to take challenges and have a knack for solving puzzles using their wit and intelligence.

The Changed Scenario

Unlike the 50s and 60s when the punishment of crime only meant suffering through imprisonment, the present practice has adopted rehabilitation as one of the fundamental principles of incarceration. While criminals were kept away from the masses for posing a threat to society, they are now being given the opportunity to correct themselves and once again come back to a normal life. Thus, one of the other jobs in criminal justice also involves expert practitioners who utilize their knowledge, experience, and skills in planning correction facilities. There are also experts who participate in the policy-making for prisons and adjustment of procedures to accommodate changing policies. If you are ready to work in a public sector, you may also opt for the post of a researcher or an analyst in the courts.

Eligibility and Training

Adequate specialized training is essential while choosing a career in criminal justice. Students with a suitable educational background and relevant degrees can apply for the various posts available in this field. An undergraduate degree is the minimum requirement to specialize in any of the related areas.

For earning their degrees through proper training and guidance, students need to either attend classroom lectures or opt for online training modules. Aside from the theoretical modules, hands-on experience leading to real-life situations and case studies are keys to attain employment and success in this field.

Finding The Right Criminal Defense Lawyer In Your Area

People seldom hire the services of a criminal defense lawyer. This is only when they get involved in an unexpected incident. This is usually their first time to seek the services of these attorneys. Though they may be new to this, it does not give them an excuse to make the wrong choice. It is also good to mention that, during the hearings, legal defense services play a vital part. If you make the wrong choice of services, this will greatly affect your family and your future. In this respect, it is crucial to choose the appropriate criminal defense lawyer with some particular things in mind. Read on to know the following tips that can allow you to find the appropriate defense attorney.

Experience

Before ever hiring an attorney’s legal services, you should take his experience into consideration. As a matter of fact, this feature has been divided into three categories:

As you may have expected, first you have to focus on are the years of experience. Without a doubt, it is easy to see the difference in the representation of a lawyer with only a year of experience, and another lawyer that has decades of experience. A lawyer that has more experience in a particular field knows more about courtroom practices and techniques to let you get faster results than new recruits. It is easier for them to deal with the unexpected events that they face in the courtrooms.

While more experience is always preferred, you should distinguish the experience of lawyers based on the trial’s geographical area. To be more accurate, a lawyer from one state is not quite suited to fulfill the requirements of a client from a different state. In addition to this, there is a difference of laws in the two places. So, you have to make sure to find a lawyer from the trial’s geographical area.

There are a number of practice areas and subjects. You should hire the services of an attorney who has mastered the specific area of specialization that you are interested in. If you are looking for representation in criminal cases, you should not expect to get this done by a lawyer specializing in bankruptcy.

Details

You can make the right choice when you study the details on the principle and representation style of a criminal defense lawyer. However, these are not easy for every client to grasp, but still need to be considered for effective representation. The traits of lawyers that clients should focus on are as follows:

  • Check if they are actively involved in the case. They should always be prepared to work on the provided minor details with full focus and specialization. Just the same, lawyers should value your discussion and theories.
  • You can also see the caliber of a lawyer that is responsive, especially when it comes to preparing strategies. They should show their responsiveness as they make strategies and plans. They should be quick to respond every time you ask them a particular question.

Once you have short-listed a few lawyer names that you find suitable for your needs, the next thing you should do is to compare their track records in the past.

By using the tips listed in this article, you have a better chance of choosing the finest criminal defense lawyer for your case. You should not make this decision too easily, as the outcome of your trial can decide your life in the future.

The Benefits of Getting a Masters Degree in Criminal Justice

It is said that real learning starts at the graduate level of education. At this level, you are required to do more in-depth research and study. Society expects more out of you.

But are there benefits for the individual that embarks on this level of study? The answer is indeed yes. In this article, I discuss the benefits of getting a graduate masters degree in criminal justice.

With no particular importance attached to the order of presentation, they are:

1. A master’s degree in criminal justice prepares you for leadership, administrative, and management positions in the criminal justice system. You will become a leader, administrator, and manager of such criminal justice systems as the courts, correctional facilities, law enforcement organizations, private and public security organizations.

This gives you the power to chart the direction of such organizations. You will set the pace for other criminal justice personnel. You will be looked upon to set ethical standards and develop new methods of tackling criminal justice problems and issues.

This is just reward for attaining this level of education. It is a position and benefit that should not be taken lightly. The right person will use it to become an agent of change for the good of society.

2. It goes without saying that being leader, administrator, and manager of criminal justice organizations comes with the benefit of more money. A master degree holder makes $61,000 per year to start. This is compared to about $58,000 per year for a bachelor degree holder. When you attain the leadership position I discussed above, you stand to make well over $100,000 per year. A master degree in criminal justice does indeed have its rewards.

3. A masters degree in criminal justice gives you the opportunity to specialize in one area of criminal justice. While a bachelor degree program is broad in nature, a master degree program gives you the chance to become an expert in one area of criminal justice.

For example, you can get a masters degree in criminal justice with specialization in corrections. Your research and study will give you the opportunity to do in-depth study and analysis of the correctional system. Needless to say, with this type of in-depth study, you will come to be an expert in corrections.

This will put you in a position to benefit as your opinion is sought in issues relating to corrections. You maybe called to give your expert opinion in legal and legislative issues concerning corrections. You can make money as a consultant in such situations.

There you have it…..the benefits of getting a masters degree in criminal justice. What I have outlined above is by no means exhaustive. There are other benefits to getting this degree. Covering all of them is beyond what I can do in this short article. If you are still interested in finding out more benefits of getting a master degree in criminal justice, I urge you to look into it some more. You can do this by visiting websites that deal with the subject in more detail.

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The New Identify Theft – Medical Fraud

Identity theft is a very big problem and growing larger daily. Most people are concerned about credit card theft and use of debit cards. However there is an even bigger problem; medical-related fraud.

Any type of identity theft usually ruins your credit rating and makes you liable for large bills that you didn’t create. You get caught up in a web of false information that will plague you financially and medically for years to come.

Medical theft causes even more problems. If someone steals your medial insurance cards and goes to the doctor or hospital, receives services, maybe even surgery, they have created a huge problem for you.

One: You don’t find out until later, usually when the bill gets turned over to collection agency that you own a huge hospital and/or doctor bill.

Two: Your credit report takes a devastating hit.

Three: Your medical history is now altered; this can affect future insurance premiums.

Four: Whatever procedure, or diagnosis they received are now part of your medical history.

Five: Your insurance benefits may be maxed out, meaning that when you need medical care or surgery you may find that you are uninsured.

Six: You may experience being refused insurance because of pre-existing conditions you don’t have

Seven: You may at risk for inaccurate treatments because another person’s allergies, and medications may be listed on your medical records.

How to Defend Yourself:

  • The best way to defend yourself is do take steps to prevent medical identity theft in the first place.
  • Take care of your insurance card. Guard it the same as you do your identification card, credit and debit cards
  • Examine every Explanation of Benefits (EOB) statements that you get. Verify that each doctor and test are ones that you actually received. Also since the thief may use a false address be sure to ask for a summary of your EOB’s at the end of each year.
  • Check your credit reports regularly
  • Stay away from free health fairs or screenings, if they ask for your insurance information.

What to Do If Suspect a Crime:

  • Act Fast
  • Request a copy of your medical records-even if you have to pay for them
  • Do not mention the possibility of Fraud to your doctor. If it gets put on the record that your information is mixed up with another person’s information, privacy law will come into play. This means that your records will be kept confidential, even to you.
  • If you confirm fraud tell the authorities.
  • Call 1-877-IDTHEFT to report the situation.

In summary, guard your insurance information carefully, treat Identity Theft as seriously as it is.

Four Questions You Should Ask Prospective Criminal Defense Lawyers

Your initial priority after you’ve been accused of a crime should be to hire yourself the best criminal defense attorney you can locate. How can you find the best attorney for your situation? There are four important questions you need to ask of each potential representing lawyer.

Question 1 – How Will The Lawyer Handle The Case? – You’ll need to explain the case to each legal counsel you see. Let them know what charges you are facing and give them the circumstances surrounding the arrest and charges. Once you are done, ask them how they plan to handle it. There are two things you need to watch out for with their answer:

– Ensure the lawyer understands your case clearly
– Ensure they’ve paid attention to all details of the case

Question 2 – What Is Their Plan Of Action? – The legal counsel you are speaking to should be telling you what kind of action they plan to take. You want to know what your criminal defense is going to be. You also want to know how they plan to proceed in defending you in a clear, concise and easy to understand manner. Even if the criminal defense attorney is good, you can feel stressed out from the entire situation when you don’t understand the proceedings and what is happening.

Question 3 – What Are The Attorney Fees? – Remember that each lawyer will bill you differently. Some ways they may charge include:

– By the hour
– By phone call
– Charge for miscellaneous expenses

Make sure to get a ballpark amount so you understand about what it will cost to defend you. You need to make sure all the terms are clear including when you’ll need to pay your first payment or if the lawyer requests a retainer for his/her services. While you want the best and most experienced criminal defense lawyer, you need to know what their costs are overall.

Question 4 – How Will Your Attorney Keep You Updated On Your Case? – You need to question the counsel how he/she plans to keep you updated on the case. Some lawyers will make sure you’re contacted all the time while others contact you with they have information they need from you or have to share. You want the type of lawyer who will inform you of everything and how the case is progressing; it doesn’t matter if there’s no report at all. Make sure you stay in the loop and your lawyer keeps you there. If the only time you want to hear from your retained legal counsel is when they have something important to tell you, let them know this upfront.

While you’re asking these four important questions, pay attention to how the lawyer makes you feel. Are you comfortable with their process or with them? While your case is ongoing, you’ll be sharing all kinds of personal and private information; do you feel comfortable with telling them this information. You want a lawyer who won’t make a judgment about you so don’t settle for just any lawyer. Find one you are comfortable with all the way around.