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-   -   Affording Legal Help (http://www.prisontalk.com/forums/showthread.php?t=720207)

90bkeen 10-21-2019 11:12 AM

Affording Legal Help
 
Besides a loan how have you all paid for an attorney. I know there is also a public defender as an option, but they typically do not fight for your case and the bare minimum is done due to case work overload. I'm not saying this is the case with all of them, but my boyfriend and I were screwed before...trying to pay for a private attorney though.

I have tried the loan option, but unfortunately I am not able to take a loan out, and family is no help/option. I would do a gofundme but the nature of the case has deemed it impossible of anyone donating to help him. I feel like this post is full of exuses. I am not trying to make them, just trying to see if there are any options I have overlooked. TIA

fbopnomore 10-21-2019 12:07 PM

You might find a lawyer who is willing to take payments, but they probably want to be assured that they will be paid regardless of the outcome of the case.

90bkeen 10-21-2019 12:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fbopnomore (Post 7798686)
You might find a lawyer who is willing to take payments, but they probably want to be assured that they will be paid regardless of the outcome of the case.



Yea Iíve been trying to find these but no luck.

yourself 10-21-2019 09:47 PM

Loans, mortgages, liquidating 401(k), pawning goods.

Most attorneys will not give a discount or free representation unless the case is high profile or the case involves a particular interest of theirs (for example, mental health).

If he has association to particular groups - native Americans, LGBTQ+, or something, he can try those groups to help.

Otherwise, this is why there are PDs, and why we should vote for a higher PD budget and case limits.

redtop43 11-11-2019 11:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 90bkeen (Post 7798680)
Besides a loan how have you all paid for an attorney. I know there is also a public defender as an option, but they typically do not fight for your case and the bare minimum is done due to case work overload. I'm not saying this is the case with all of them, but my boyfriend and I were screwed before...trying to pay for a private attorney though.

I have tried the loan option, but unfortunately I am not able to take a loan out, and family is no help/option. I would do a gofundme but the nature of the case has deemed it impossible of anyone donating to help him. I feel like this post is full of exuses. I am not trying to make them, just trying to see if there are any options I have overlooked. TIA

Repeating information from elsewhere on this board - not my personal experience - there are good and bad PD's just as there are good and bad private attorneys. Here is what PD's generally will NOT do - return your call within an hour, or maybe return your call at all if there is nothing relevant to discuss. Tell you what visiting hours at the jail are or where to park. Tell you how to put money on your loved one's books. Hire expensive experts, or any experts at all unless they might actually affect the outcome of the case. Tell your LO that he/she is innocent and everything will be alright. Here is what PD's WILL do - address the meat of the case and fight for the best outcome possible (which may not be the best possible outcome).

When I was going through it with my ex-girlfriend, I was still very tight with her. My entire contact with her PD consisted of her having her secretary tell me what the rules were on bringing her clothes to wear to court (she never went to trial anyway) and calling me for about four minutes to tell me they made a plea deal and tell me where to send my "What a wonderful person she is" letter to the judge. Which was about all she SHOULD have said to me.

studebaker71 11-11-2019 11:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 90bkeen (Post 7798680)
Besides a loan how have you all paid for an attorney. I know there is also a public defender as an option, but they typically do not fight for your case and the bare minimum is done due to case work overload. I'm not saying this is the case with all of them, but my boyfriend and I were screwed before...trying to pay for a private attorney though.

I have tried the loan option, but unfortunately I am not able to take a loan out, and family is no help/option. I would do a gofundme but the nature of the case has deemed it impossible of anyone donating to help him. I feel like this post is full of exuses. I am not trying to make them, just trying to see if there are any options I have overlooked. TIA

Straight up cash. Sucks but that was how I did it and all commissary and support too. Been a tough go.

bellisq 11-15-2019 02:22 PM

General opinions about public defenders do not apply to Federal Public Defenders. In South Florida, applicants must have completed at least 25 trials in order to apply. Many of the most successful criminal federal lawyers have worked as Federal Public Defenders. In my experience, you should not discount the possibility of getting an excellent defense from that office. Good luck in your search.

enigmaingr 11-15-2019 03:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by redtop43 (Post 7801180)
Repeating information from elsewhere on this board - not my personal experience - there are good and bad PD's just as there are good and bad private attorneys. Here is what PD's generally will NOT do - return your call within an hour, or maybe return your call at all if there is nothing relevant to discuss. Tell you what visiting hours at the jail are or where to park. Tell you how to put money on your loved one's books. Hire expensive experts, or any experts at all unless they might actually affect the outcome of the case. Tell your LO that he/she is innocent and everything will be alright. Here is what PD's WILL do - address the meat of the case and fight for the best outcome possible (which may not be the best possible outcome).

When I was going through it with my ex-girlfriend, I was still very tight with her. My entire contact with her PD consisted of her having her secretary tell me what the rules were on bringing her clothes to wear to court (she never went to trial anyway) and calling me for about four minutes to tell me they made a plea deal and tell me where to send my "What a wonderful person she is" letter to the judge. Which was about all she SHOULD have said to me.

This is more true than most realize. Many people mistake "hand holding" for competence. In most cases, PDs are actually pretty good, particularly as addressed above on the federal level. I know countless examples of cases where people plead after hiring an attorney to the same offer extended to the original PD. But if you want the same day callback or constant jail visits, then you'll likely not find it with a PD and will need to hire an attorney. Criminal defense attorneys know the game; cash upfront is the standard policy.

Born 11-24-2019 10:15 PM

We used all our credit cards combined to pay for my husbands private lawyer. Unfortunately he took the money and left us almost bankrupt.

trauma4us 11-25-2019 12:32 PM

I took out tens of thousands from my retirement - which is why I'll be working till I'm 70!

fbopnomore 11-25-2019 06:12 PM

One certainty that comes along with any involvement with the criminal justice racket is that it will be hugely expensive, and life altering.

studebaker71 11-25-2019 09:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 90bkeen (Post 7798680)
Besides a loan how have you all paid for an attorney. I know there is also a public defender as an option, but they typically do not fight for your case and the bare minimum is done due to case work overload. I'm not saying this is the case with all of them, but my boyfriend and I were screwed before...trying to pay for a private attorney though.

I have tried the loan option, but unfortunately I am not able to take a loan out, and family is no help/option. I would do a gofundme but the nature of the case has deemed it impossible of anyone donating to help him. I feel like this post is full of exuses. I am not trying to make them, just trying to see if there are any options I have overlooked. TIA

I paid my girls lawyer straight up cash. it sucked. But I did what I had to do and never look back.

GaReform 11-26-2019 07:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by studebaker71 (Post 7802550)
I paid my girls lawyer straight up cash. it sucked. But I did what I had to do and never look back.


We did the same thing for our son. Luckily we had saved a good bit towards retirement & live very simply. I know he would pay us back if he could but I doubt that will happen. He has been offered 16 great jobs since his release & all have rescinded the offers when his background came into the discussion. He sold his house while he was incarcerated because he couldn't continue paying the note with being unable to work. That money & what he saved for retirement is keeping him going right now. He does any IT work he can find & also does focus group surveys.
I definitely wouldn't put your house up for a home equity loan unless you can afford to do it without risking financial trouble yourself. Have you asked any advocacy groups in your area for suggestions? Even Legal Aid groups might have suggestions.
I know people poo-poo public defenders & I get it but not all paid lawyers are any better. I know because we have used 5 so far in different levels. None of them were hand holders so don't think because you pay that they are necessarily going to be more supportive. Ask around for lawyers that people you trust can recommend. If it's a specialized crime I suggest looking for an attorney experienced in those kinds of cases. It can make all the difference in the world.


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