Hiring a Criminal Defense Attorney When Money is an Issue
To deal with a legal case involving a criminal act, you need lawyers who understand the laws in your state, to help you navigate the paperwork and appear with you in court. These Lawyers can be expensive; however, there are several ways to retain a Criminal Defense Attorney if you have low income. You can contact a legal aid society or arrange a payment plan that works for your budget.
You may get a court-appointed lawyer
If you can’t afford to hire a private attorney, you might be eligible to get a court-appointed Criminal Defense Lawyer. The very first time you appear in front of the judge, you will be asked whether you are represented by an attorney and whether you want a court-appointed attorney. The procedure for working with the court-appointed attorney might vary from state to state.
You may contact a self-help legal clinic
In individual states, there are free self-help clinics specially designed to provide free legal advice to anyone who requires. These self-help clinics are useful resources when you have a question or two about the process you need to undertake, or which forms to fill out. However, they are not an alternative for retaining a Criminal Defense Attorney who can suitably help with your case. Some clinics do accept questions in person, while others may accept questions submitted online.
To search for a self-help program, you may call your local courthouse or search online. Most of the programs held by courthouses focus on specific legal issues. For example, some courts might run a domestic relations clinic which can help you with matters like divorces. Therefore, make sure that you attend the right program to avail help with your particular issue. These programs may also help you find an affordable Criminal Defense Lawyer if the program cannot legally represent you.
Finding Free Legal Assistance
There is a big network of legal aid programs which function on federal grants. These programs employ lawyers to offer free services to eligible people. However, to qualify for legal aid, your income must be below a certain number. To find out if you qualify, get in touch with your local legal aid office.