What is the income threshold to qualify for a public defender in San Jose, California? Criminal Defense.

Asked 6 months ago - San Jose, CA

What is the income threshold to qualify for a public defender in San Jose, California? Criminal Defense.

Attorney answers (6)

  1. Anthony Michael Solis

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . The attorneys on this site are private attorneys. However, you qualify for the assistance of the public defender if you only earn a certain amount of money. If you make too much money, you may still qualify but will be ordered to contribute to your own defense by paying something.

    No legal advice is given here. My responses to questions on Avvo are never intended as legal advice and must NOT... more
  2. Andrew Stephen Roberts

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

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    Lawyers agree

    Answered . My colleague is correct. You can apply for PD. The court will determine if you must contribute to defense.

    ANDREW ROBERTS CRIMINAL AND TRAFFIC TICKET DEFENSE ATTORNEY
  3. David Jean Kaloyanides

    Pro

    Contributor Level 13

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . It is not a matter of a specific threshold. It is a determination of income and expenses for basic needs. Most people qualify for a public defender. However, as both of my colleagues correctly note, the court can order contribution to the cost of the public defender.

    The content on this Web site is intended for informational purposes only. No part of this site is intended to... more
  4. Matthew Powell Fletcher

    Contributor Level 3

    2

    Lawyers agree

    1

    Answered . The fact that you are requesting "the income threshold to qualify" tells me you probably already know the answer:) It all depends. If you need the help of the public defender's office, really need it and you are not just trying to save some money, there is a little to zero chance you will be turned away. What is important is to know that whatever your income level you will be provided with an attorney at your first appearance. You may have to contribute to his/her fees later? But you will have a fully competent attorney to help you from the beginning to the end.

  5. Vijay Dinakar

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

    Answered . The other attorneys are correct in stating that the court will likely appoint you counsel if your declaration regarding income indicates that you can't afford private counsel. One issue is that following appointment of a public defender, the court can and often does impose a fee that it awards to the public defender for representing you. Sometimes that fee is nominal ($75) but sometimes it can be quite high if the matter proceeds to trial. You have a right to contest the imposition of this fee but this is one area where the PD's office may have an interest that it contrary to your own. Most likely you will not be obliged to pay anything. Good luck.

  6. Stephen Ross Cohen

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . Don't ask the question just do it, you have nothing to lose.

    My name is Stephen R. Cohen and have practiced since 1974. I practice in Los Angeles and Orange County, CA.... more

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