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What is the difference between a court appointed attorney, and a hired attorney? Will they do the same thing for you?

Macomb, MI |

In a DUI first offending case, with no record? How much should a lawyer cost if you hire one in the State of Michigan with no criminal record?

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Attorney answers 4

Posted

What the attorney charges is typically based on his or her experience. Drunk driving law is a complex area of criminal defense. Expect to pay a minimum of $1,000.00 to retain an attorney experienced in this area of law.

My response does not constitute legal advice and we do not have an attorney/client relationship. You may contact me for more information at 248-563-3652.

Posted

I would engage an attorney for the limited purpose of determining if you have a viable defense, and if so further retain that counsel for your representation. It depends of the facts as to whether there a sufficient potential benefits to warrant hiring counsel. If you chose claim you cannot afford an attorney, you can ask that you have assigned counsel but, eventually, you will have to pay their fees. There will tend to be lower than engaged counsel who might tend to be more aggressive. We have experience in this area, and generally ask for a $2500 retainer which allows us the ability to do the job right.

To the PROSPECTIVE client, please call myself or another attorney for your choice with more detaiils and an appointment. My PRELIMINARY answer to your question(s) is for general purposes and based upon what little information you have conveyed. It is based on such limited information that the general answer should never be relied as a reason for your action or inaction. My response does NOT establish an attorney-client relationship and such may only be established by mutual agreement, and the signing of a written retainer agreement, which will generally require payment for our services, as this is what we do for a living and, just like you, we must get paid for our work.. .

Asker

Posted

I disagree with Mr. John Brennan. Private lawyers are not the judges nor jurors. They don't decide if you win or lose. There are various reasons that the lawyers choose not to take the case besides merit of case: 1) conflict of interests 2) cost vs. recoverable $$$ 3) competency and expertise of the firm 4) resources of the firm 5) attorneys' personal preferences 6) other intangible factors 7) how large of awards and how soon can they recover for the law firm etc etc. If the firm does't have resources, experty, or interest, then no point for the potential client to engage in discussion and to open up their privacies to the total strangers (even lawyers) if they aren't going to do anyting useful for the potential client. So for that reason, I always check: 1) availability 2) no adverse conflict of interest to work disadvantageous for me 3) interested in taking the case to service me 4) have resources and experty.....before divulging in any conversation. My information is not free to the people who have no use for me.

Asker

Posted

Actually, I was talking about plaintiff's case but same principal.

Posted

Both the appointed and retained (hired) attorney have the same job and obligations. However, no two attorneys will ever handle a case 100% the same. No two attorneys would possibly use the same language to the prosecutor in trying to make a deal, or to the judge in trying to influence sentence. One attorney might find a valid basis for helpful motions to present to the court, while another attorney might not even realize there is something useful to be filed. For example, not long ago I won suppression of the defendant's statement to police, and dismissal of a DUI case, because of violation of the corpus delicti rule. As I left the courtroom, another attorney asked me what that was, and I tried to explain the best I could. If that attorney had been on my client's case instead of me, the defendant would probably have been convicted, for that attorney did not even know about the corpus delicti rule, and therefore would not have considered it among his options.

Normally, if an attorney has enough experience and skill to get people to hire him on a regular basis, he will not bother going on the list to get appointed cases. For that reason, on average most defendants will do better with retained counsel. However, that is a generality that might not apply to all cases. Just because an attorney charges money does not mean he is any good, or that he will go all-out to help the client. Just because an attorney is on the list for court appointments does not mean he is rotten. Often, very good attorneys who are young will get on that list in order to become more well-known. Experienced older attorneys may also be on the appointments list because they find it too difficult to run a regular business. However, if I were the one being charged, I would hire an attorney if I could afford it. This might cost only $1000 for a simple plea bargain, up to $10,000 or $20,000 for a full trial defense. The cost may depend on whether you agree to have the attorney hire experts to raise a scientific challenge to the testing results. Good luck.

Contact me at 248-399-6930 for a free consultation. You and I do not have an attorney-client relationship formed by our communications on this website. Advice given by me on this website is general advice based on partial information. You should not rely on any advice given without first hiring a lawyer in the area where the case is pending, and providing that lawyer with full information.

Asker

Posted

Appointed would be the Government's choice. Retained will be supposedly your choice, but I doubt you can hire any lawyer of your choice since government can obstruct you and you'll default into hiring the lawyer of the government's choice anyway. I am talking about plaintiff's lawyer since I have no use for defense lawyer.

James S. Lawrence

James S. Lawrence

Posted

In a criminal prosecution, the plaintiff is the prosecutor. If you are being charged, you need a defense lawyer. Just about any lawyer can volunteer to get on the appointments list to be appointed as a defense lawyer in criminal cases, and a clerk normally assigns the cases in order, going down the list of cases and the list of attorneys. Therefore, it is very rare for an actual government employee to decide on a particular attorney for you. Typically, you get luck of the draw with appointments, whereas with a retained attorney you can pick your own attorney. I have NEVER been induced to get off of a retained criminal case by government pressure, so I question whether your fear of that is justified. There are many attorneys, including myself, who will fight vigorously and imaginatively for the client that hires us. However, that does not guarantee victory, because if it did guarantee victory, no one would ever get convicted of anything.

Posted

You need to talk to an attorney. Court Appointed attorneys can be just as good if not better then retained attorneys. If you want more personal attention you should hire an attorney. Retainers are usually set based on the complexity of each case. OWI cases usually are flat-fee/hourly-rate combination cases because of the complexity and work that may need to be done on each case.

Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship has been established. Please contact an attorney about your legal rights. This answer is for educational purposes only.

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