If the case you are facing does not carry a possible jail sentence or a possible prison sentence, you will not be entitled to a court appointed lawyer. If prison or jail is possible, then you are entitled to court appointed counsel if you are indigent. Unemployed does not necessarily mean indigent. If you could borrow the money, or take it out of a 401k, or sell property to hire a lawyer, etc., then you are probably not indigent. But, when you go to court, the judge will most likely go over the qualifications if you are facing jail or prison.
Ticket lawyers typically only cost a few hundred dollars as opposed to the thousands a felony lawyer typically costs.
Why not call a few lawyers and see if you can get one to take your case.
If you are going to court without a lawyer, it is certainly proper to politely request more time to get counsel hired.
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Did the officer see you drive to the store? Did he wait until seeing you walk back to your car? Are you willing to pay the tickets or do you want to fight them? Those are decisions only you can make. What is it worth to fight these tickets vs. what is it going to cost to get my tickets taken care of and getting back to a legal status to drive. Weigh that out with a clear mind. Just because the officer did not approach you when you were driving, does not necessarily mean he did not see you drive earlier.
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