Question: Will My Public Defender Really Help?

Can I fire my public defender and get a lawyer?

A person defended by an attorney appointed by the State of California, however, cannot fire the attorney, but can ask the judge to remove the attorney (a public defender or alternate public defender) and appoint another attorney if the defendant’s Constitutional (Sixth Amendment) right to effective counsel is ….

Why are public defenders paid so little?

First, many public defenders do not get a large salary. Law school grads come out with large debts and find they cannot afford to work as public defenders because the salary does not allow them to pay their student loans back. This is extremely short sighted by law schools but it is a fact of life.

How many hours a week do public defenders work?

40 hour weekRegardless of the number of average cases a PD carries he is paid on a salary which increases over time and promotion. One’s salary does not reflect the amount of time he works. A PD will find he/she will put in a solid 40 hour week average minimum if they are diligent in the performance of their duties.

Can prosecutor drop all charges before trial?

Prosecutors also have the authority to drop all charges before trial, even in the absence of a plea bargain. That isn’t something they often do, and it usually isn’t something they are happy to do. In some cases, however, a criminal defense lawyer can persuade a prosecutor to drop all charges before trial.

How much do lawyers cost per hour?

Attorney’s hourly fees range between $100 and $400 depending on their experience and the type of case. Attorneys in small towns or lawyers in training cost $100 to $200 per hour, while experienced lawyers in metropolitan areas charge $200 to $400 hourly.

What questions should I ask my public defender?

10 Questions To Ask Your Public DefenderWhy These Questions To Ask Your Public Defender Are Important. … How Long Have You Been Doing This? … Have You Had This Kind Of Case Before? … What Is Your Relationship With The Prosecutor? … What Can I Expect In The Next Month? … What Can I Expect At The Next Court Date?More items…•

Do court appointed attorneys really help?

A court appointed attorney has the same duty to fight for you as a privately-hired attorney. The above answer is intended for informational purposes and is not legal advice. It does not constitute the creation of an attorney-client relationship.

Do public defenders ever win?

In my experience, public defenders fight very hard and win a lot of cases. It is not true at all that they only do the bare minimum to get by. The charge that they do not return phone calls has, unfortunately, somewhat more truth to it.

Is hiring a lawyer worth it?

Like any profession, lawyers are not appropriate or necessary in every situation, but they can be extremely useful and even necessary in certain situations. Many lawyers specialize and are knowledgeable in a particular area, so they can help you if you need representation or assistance in their area of expertise.

Is it better to take a plea deal or go to trial?

If the defendant is ever charged with another offense, the prosecution and judge will review their criminal record. Having a guilty plea or a no contest plea on the record will look better than having a conviction after a trial.

What happens if you don’t pay public defender fee?

the court will hold you in contempt and impose a fine which will add to the amount that you will have to pay. When it reaches a certain amount the court will impose jail time for your failure to comply.

Should you pay a lawyer upfront?

As a matter of internal policy, a lawyer may request a retainer fee before agreeing to accept your case or complete any work on it. However, you do not have to pay such a fee if you are not comfortable with the idea.

How can I get a lawyer if I have no money?

Here’s how to find legal help if you can’t afford a lawyer:Contact the city courthouse.Seek free lawyer consultations.Look to legal aid societies.Visit a law school.Contact your county or state bar association.Go to small claims court.

Can a public defender get charges dropped?

The first way your attorney can get the charges against you to be reduced is by having them dropped or dismissed. … Even if your attorney can’t have the charges against you dropped or dismissed, he or she may be able to have them reduced. One of the most common ways this is done is through a plea deal.

What to do if your public defender is not doing his job?

A public defender has the same obligations to represent a client as an attorney you may hire. If the public defender is not doing his job, you could always hire your own attorney. Otherwise, you husband could bring the matter to the attention of the court arguing that he is receiving ineffective assistance of counsel.

Can a lawyer get your charges dropped?

If your defense lawyer can convince a judge or a prosecutor that the police violated your constitutionally-protected rights, a prosecutor can “drop” the case against you or a judge can “dismiss” the charge, unless the state has additional evidence to use against you.

How do you convince a judge to not go to jail?

Tips for Speaking in Front of the JudgeBe yourself. Well, at least be the best version of yourself. … Do not lie, minimize your actions, or make excuses. … Keep your emotions in check. … The judge may ask you when you last used alcohol or drugs. … Be consistent. … The judge may ream you out.

Is it better to hire a lawyer or public defender?

A big difference between a public defender vs private attorney is the fact that if a lawyer does a poor job their business will suffer. A public defender gets more cases than they can handle no matter the outcomes. … Another benefit of a private lawyer is access to more defense possibilities.