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Is a Criminal Defense Attorney the Same as a Public Defender?

Posted by Michael G. Butash | Jul 27, 2019 | 0 Comments

Many people already have some idea of what a public defender is if they have ever watched one of the many crime related shows on television. Some people once knowing what a public defender is often ask themselves, If I was given the option to have representation of a public defender, why would I consider hiring a criminal defense attorney? Apollo Beach residents should know that getting represented by a public defender is not exactly what they had imagined when they were given the right to have one appointed to them for their case. Many more people are happier with a hired legal professional than one that has little to no time with you and your case because they are focused on other issues.

Many People Do Not Understand How Busy Public Defenders Are

When someone is watching a crime show in which a public defender appears to represent someone for an upcoming trial, they often do not give much background of all the other cases they have to work on. Unlike a criminal defense attorney, Apollo Beach public defenders cannot pick and choose which cases they wish to represent based off of their skills or areas of interest within the many law fields. The biggest problem many people have with a public defender is they feel as though they do not have enough to time to talk with their lawyer about their case because they are so busy.

Stipulations of Hiring a Public Defender

Another misconception people have about a public defender is they think that everyone is entitled to representation under the sixth amendment. A public defender will not be assigned to a defendant unless the defendant is charged with a misdemeanor or a felony, unlike that of hiring a criminal defense attorney. Apollo Beach residents should also know that not even all misdemeanors qualify someone for representation by a public defender. If someone is only facing a fine and no jail time, a public defender would not be assigned to this case, and will use their skills and services elsewhere.

*Disclaimer: The views expressed here are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of Butash Law Group*

About the Author

Michael G. Butash

Michael G. Butash Stetson University College of Law Florida State University Former State Prosecutor Mike grew up in the Tampa Bay area and graduated from Stetson University College of Law in 1997. He was immediately hired as an Assistant State Attorney for the 6th Judicial Circuit (Pinellas/...

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