Private Lawyers And Public Defenders: Pros And Cons

Private Lawyers And Public Defenders: Pros And Cons

Did you know that if you’re arrested and can’t afford a lawyer, the court will appoint one for you? It’s true, and you may wonder why in the world anyone would hire a lawyer if the court just gives you one for free.

Sometimes it’s better to pay for your defense — and sometimes not. Let’s take a look at some pros and cons.

Public Defender

Public defenders are lawyers who are paid by the government in order to defend individuals who can’t afford to hire their own lawyer.

A “free” lawyer might sound great in theory, but it’s important to keep in mind that because of their position, most public defenders have huge volume of cases, and are often very overworked.

This means that you most likely will not get the same attention, time, energy, and drive that you would from a private lawyer. They may not be able to go into depth with your case the way a private lawyer would, and they may not have as much time to prepare for court dates.

Public defenders are also typically underpaid, which means that they get easily burned out and may not be as motivated to help you.

Another problem that many defendants have with their public defender is that they don’t get to choose who it is. A lawyer you don’t know is better than no lawyer at all, but this is still counted as a con most of the time.

A positive to having a public defender, however, is that they work frequently with the same judges and opposing council, and so they may have an advantage by having insight into how a specific judge may lean in terms of a plea.

Private Lawyer

Yes, private lawyers are expensive. Some can cost hundreds per hour. However, if you can afford one, they’re very often worth it.

Besides the fact that you can choose your own private lawyer, he or she will spend a lot of one-on-one time with you, asking questions, doing research, and getting to know your case so that they will be able to make a strong, solid legal defense to get you the best deal possible.

Although the biggest deterrent for most people is the high cost of a private lawyer, another thing to keep is mind is that you still need to do your research if you decide to hire one.

Just because they’re a private lawyer doesn’t mean that they are automatically a great choice or that you’ll win. Make sure to do your homework!


This article is just a general overview. There are many incredible public defenders out there who will work very hard for their defendants, no matter how many cases they may have at once. On the other hand, there are also many private lawyers who may not do such a good job for you, even if you’re paying them.

The choice will come down to your gut instinct and your unique situation. We hope that you never need a lawyer, but if you do, good luck.

And if you find yourself in need of a bail bondsman to get you out of jail until your court date, please allow us to help you. Who knows what your lawyer can do for you, but at Armstrong Bail Bonds, we can definitely help you! Contact us day or night, any day of the week.

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