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Should You Hire Your Own Criminal Defense Attorney?


When was the last time you happily depended or settled on a publically provided service? Has there ever been a moment where you wish you were on the bus rather than in your own automobile? Purchasing something from the private sector is almost-guaranteed to be better than receiving it from a public source. In fact, our entire economy is centered on the idea that if you want quality, you have to pay for it, and criminal defense attorneys are no exemption to this universal rule. After you have been charged for a criminal violation, your first step should be to retain the services of a criminal defense lawyer with a private practice, rather than relying on the help of a public defender.

Here are two reasons why you should always use a private attorney:

  1. Personal attention: A public defender can see hundreds and hundreds of cases in a year. No matter how skilled they are, a public defender assigned by the court will not be able to achieve a personal connection to their clients, even if they wanted to. This lack of personal attention and compassion can weaken a defense strategy and leave a client vulnerable to conviction with maximum penalties.
  2. Time and dedication: What is even more concerning is how much time a public defender can dedicate to a single case. With the reports and case files clogging their inboxes, some public defenders are forced to give a case less than an hour of review. It is unreasonable to expect that the very best defense could be constructed in such a limited amount of time. Being overworked is the number one reason a public defender leaves the occupation.

Can You Even Get a Public Defender?

The Sixth Amendment states that everyone gets a fair trial and a public defender, if they cannot afford one themselves. This is a pretty big 'if' that is frequently overlooked. Just because you want to use a public defender does not mean that you will be appointed one.

In order to qualify for a public defender's help, you must first complete a screening process and financial review. Not only is this arguably intrusive, it is undeniably time-consuming. Days or weeks you could have been spending working on your case with a private criminal defense attorney will slip away as you wait to see if you can get a public defender. And, if you don't qualify, you will not be getting that application fee back, either.

Make the Right Call the First Time

As stated earlier, you ideally don't want to depend on the bus to get to work. So why would you depend on a public defender when your reputation, finances, and future freedom are in jeopardy? Don't take that chance. Seek out the help of a private criminal defense lawyer as soon as you can.

If you live in South Carolina and want top-notch representation from a Columbia criminal defense attorney that can get to know you, fully review your case, and craft an intelligent defense on your behalf, you want Masella Law Firm, P.A. We have been proudly defending the rights of the accused for 20 years. Call 803.938.4952 to discuss your case with us today.

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