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CRIMINAL DEFENSE • DISCIPLINARY INVESTIGATIONS & HEARINGS

Why hire an attorney instead of using the public defender or representing myself?

If you do not have the money to hire an attorney, then the court will appoint an attorney to represent you through the public defender’s office. Many people are in a situation where they may be eligible for representation from the public defender, but they may also be able to raise funds in an emergency to hire an attorney for an important matter.

Being charged with a serious crime is an emergency. It is something that may have an effect on the rest of your life, and if you have any way to pay for top quality legal representation, you should do so.

Attorneys who work for the public defender’s office are competent and hard-working. They are also typically handling a very large workload and working with limited resources, so they may not be able to give each case the same attention that a private criminal defense attorney can. In addition, you may find that private criminal defense representation is more affordable than you expected, particularly when you consider the importance of protecting your rights when you are charged with a crime.

Some people may be tempted to represent themselves, but this is always a bad decision. The average defendant does not have the knowledge to prepare an adequate defense, and even attorneys should not represent themselves, if they are charged with a crime, because they cannot be objective about their own case.

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