Hello and welcome back to Attorney Paz’s rants of a criminal defense attorney. This week I want to talk about paying your lawyers.
Paying Your Attorney
I filed several motions to withdraw recently, and that’s all based on non-payment of retainer fees. So when you have been arrested, you are constitutionally entitled to the effective assistance of counsel. If you can’t afford an attorney, you can apply for a public defender, and the court will appoint you an attorney. That attorney is free and doesn’t cost anything. But the flipside of that is that that lawyer has hundreds of cases because they’re a free lawyer and other people are using their services as well.
And so, they might not have enough time to give you the attention that you require, sit down with you personally, things like that. If you want a more personalized experience, or maybe you think that you can get a better result if you go to a different attorney, someone who works in a particular field, for example, I do sex offenses, or you want somebody with a little bit more experience. So say you’re assigned to an attorney at the public defender’s office that hasn’t been practicing that long – something to that effect.
Retaining a Private Attorney
If you come to me, you come to my office, and we will quote you a retainer fee. So I don’t get paid by the state to represent you. The only way that I get paid is by you paying your retainer fees. So it comes to a head when I have attended court on your behalf five, six, eight times, and then you decide you want to put your case on the trial list. And don’t get me wrong – I’m an attorney, I love legal issues. I love fighting the good cases. I love litigating good issues and winning in court. However, I can’t do this for free. I have loans, my office needs to make payroll, we have a staff – all of the things that made you come to us in the first place require money to operate.
So please pay your attorneys. I realize that money gets tight sometimes, but I have clients who have no problem picking up cases and then paying their bail bondsman, but I’m the one that’s actually keeping you out of jail. I’m the one that’s trying to keep you from getting felony convictions. So these things, if they’re valuable to you, please pay your attorneys. That’s my rant for the day, if you have any questions feel free to email me at [email protected]