If you've been cited or ticketed for a very minor offense that only involves a small fine, such as littering or smoking in a public place where it's not allowed, you may decide to simply pay the fine and be done with the matter. However, not all criminal cases are that simple, and some should be handled by a criminal lawyer, even if it's your first offense, if you've been arrested for this offense before and think you know how to handle court proceedings, and even if the offense seems relatively minor. Note a few factors to consider to determine if you should call a criminal lawyer in your case.
You might look up some information online about how such an offense will affect your permanent record and then consider how this would affect your everyday life. For example, if you're cited for theft, this might not seem very important, but if you have a record for theft, even petty theft, following you for the next several years, you may have a hard time getting a job and especially one that involves handling money. A charge of reckless driving may keep you from getting any type of job where you may do any driving; this can include operating a forklift or other such equipment.
This can be worse for you if you've been arrested for this offense before, as repeated charges may be looked at more carefully by prospective employers and even lenders or landlords. If the citation you've gotten involves any type of record, even if it lasts for only a few years before the citation is removed, discuss your options with a lawyer so they can work to have the charges reduced or removed from your record sooner.
Charges are exaggerated
Do you think the charges against you have been overblown or exaggerated? For example, if you were speeding but got charged with reckless driving, or were simply waiting for a friend outside the shop where they worked but got charged with loitering, you may not want to overlook the possibility of having these reduced or even dismissed. If you have a good defense or can somehow prove that the charges against you were exaggerated, don't think that it's not worth the fight. Getting them dismissed or reduced can protect your record but also protect other persons who may be targets of aggressive prosecution or harassment by police. If a pattern can be found of police exaggerating charges or harassing citizens in a certain area, having a lawyer address this can mean putting a stop to that type of harassment.