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If i want to pull my plea and seek private counsel how do i go about doing that?

San Diego, CA |

i feel i did not have proper representation in my criminal case and was pushed by my attorney to take a deal that i didn't want to take . i want to pull the plea and fire my attorney and seek private counsel , is that possible when i already signed the deal ?

Attorney Answers 5


Your new attorney would have to file a "motion to withdraw plea". If you weren't properly advise of your constitutional rights or if your plea was coerced, you may have a chance. Remember that if the motion is granted, the criminal process will start all over again. So, you could lose the deal that you currently have. There is also attorneys fees associated with filing the motion. You may want to consult with an attorney and think about it twice whether you want to withdraw your plea at all. If you have a good or decent deal but you are mistaken about your attorney pushing you around, you could end up in a worse position than where you are now.

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Yes but these things have strict time limits. Contact a locally experienced criminal defense attorney ASAP to evaluate your case and hopefully not just tell you what you want to hear in order to gain your business.

Law Offices of David Shapiro 3555 4th Avenue San Diego, CA 92103 (619) 295-3555

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I defer to my California colleagues, but I have a further observation to make.

We often encounter the complaint that "I was . . . pushed by my attorney to take a deal that I didn't want to take." This is a difficult subject. It can indeed happen that an attorney might bring excessive pressure on a client to take a deal. But on the other hand, it is the attorney's duty and proper function to tell a client the truth, and this is all the more important if that truth has to be blunt and brutal. A stern warning that if you turn down a deal you are heading for a virtually certain conviction and a longer sentence on a more serious charge is not improper pressure. It is, where warranted by the situation, the lawyer's obligation.

I suggest that you consult another attorney, or more than one if you wish, for an evaluation of your case and your options, and that you do it quickly before whatever deadlines you may face under your state law have expired.

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There are only a few reasons a court will recognize in order to successfully withdraw a plea. If those circumstances exist, your attorney will need to file a motion in order for your plea to be withdrawn. A second, related question should be asked: Whether it is wise to witdraw your plea? Even if you can withdraw your plea, would doing so result in a worse result for you? You should discuss this with your current attorney, and if you are still dissatisfied you can obtain a second opinion by receiving free consultation from another defense attorney.

Law Office of Andrew Limberg, APLC 380 S. Melrose Dr., #329 Vista, CA 92081 (760) 806-4381

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It may be possible. There are certain time limits that apply, so you should hire a new attorney ASAP.

I cannot say what will happen in YOUR case, but I have done a number of these in the past. In those cases in which we were able to get the plea withdrawn, the offer from the prosecutor never got better. It either stayed the same or got worse. If your goal is a better deal, that may be something for you to consider.

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