Can I get a court appointed lawyer for a custody case? Or can I get a lawyer for just the days of the trial and /or meetings?

Asked over 2 years ago - Carterville, IL

my fiance and I have tried to hire but can't find anyone in our area that will start for less than 3500 or take payments. We can do payments easily. I want joint custody and have always wanted that, my whom I was never married now wants full because my fiance and I had to relocate for his job offer. I can't find any aid that will help since it's not an abuse case, and I don't know how to find a probono lawyer. The case is in clinton, ia. I have always been the primary caregiver,though he works more and makes more, I was always the one actually with the child and doing all involved with her. I don't know what else to do. Please help us, I don't knw what I'll do with out my little girl.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Judy A. Goldstein

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . First of all, you need an Iowa attorney if your case is in Clinton, IA. Next - You are not entitled to a court appointed lawyer. It does not seem that you are entitled to a pro bono lawyer either but you can certainly call legal aid offices in or near Clinton to see if you qualify. Also, it is unlikely you will find a lawyer willing to only represent you at trial since the entire case would have to be reviewed in order to prepare for the trial. A $3,500 retainer is very reasonable, given the few facts that you have given us, but you need to discuss your case in person with potential attorneys. Ask if you are entitled to seek interim attorney's fees from your opponent if you cannot afford a lawyer. We cannot give you much help here in this Illinois forum since it appears your case will be applying Iowa law.

  2. Barry Franklin Poulson

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . State does not provide attorneys outside of criminal cases. Continue to shop around. Attorneys can sign on for a limited appearance, but few like to do so.

    We do not have a client/attorney relationship until you make an appointment, we discuss your case face to face, I... more

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