While hiring an attorney to represent you in court can be expensive, a good defense attorney will know things that you don’t, such as whether your charges can be reduced. A public defender is free if you don’t have the means to hire a private attorney, but there are drawbacks to using one. They may, however, be a better choice than a low-cost private lawyer. The guides in this section will help you determine when you need to hire an attorney, and what you should look for when choosing one to represent you.