I know public defenders are supposed to be free, but can the state ever make defendants pay for them? What if defendants are lying about being too poor to pay for private counsel?
Places like North Carolina include mandatory fees for court appointments, and guilt findings typically include orders to pay those attorneys fees. Someone lying on the financial disclosure form about indigence can commit perjury and contempt of court with those misstatements, will undermine their instant case, can be charged in those new cases, and are likely to lose their appointed defenders. There is no up side to lying to a court.
This answer DOES NOT create an attorney-client relationship, and DOES NOT address the many specific and confidential variables needed to provide adequate legal advice. This answer is ONLY general guidance.
If you are working, the court may have you pay some fees. Usually, this does not happen in Federal Court.
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