Switching Your Lawyer During A Criminal Case

People often wonder if they can hire a private criminal defense lawyer after the case has already been assigned to the public defender’s office? The answer to that question is “yes.” You can hire a private lawyer after your case has already been assigned to the public defender’s office.

Lawyers deal with such situations often as many clients are given the option to have the public defender’s office at their initial appearance before a judge. This often happens before the client has had adequate time to truly decide on what lawyer they want to represent them, much less figure out if they can even afford a lawyer. Some people will apply temporarily for a public defender just to have someone on their case until they can get out of jail, get themselves together financially, and hire a lawyer.

How to Switch Lawyers

If you visit a law firm and decide that you would like a private criminal defense lawyer to take your case rather than the public defender’s office, we make the process very simple. The lawyer will prepare a motion, which is called a substitution of counsel, which will be directed to the judge assigned to your case. The judge will sign the motion and ask for you to sign it as well. The “runner” will then take that motion and get the public defender’s office to sign off on it.

The public defender’s office then forwards the motion along with the order that was prepared in your case to the judge assigned to your case. The judge will then look at the order and see that it previously filed pleadings on your case, meaning he or she will notice that we’re going to be representing you, before he or she signs the order. Once all of this takes place, you would have officially switched from having a public defender to a private criminal defense lawyer.

Why You Would Want to Switch Lawyers

There are many different reasons why you may want to switch legal representation in the middle of a criminal case. Some of the most common reasons include:

  • You’re worried about their performance
  • You’re unsure of their litigation abilities
  • You aren’t getting along with your attorney
  • There’s poor communication between you and the attorney

If your current legal representation doesn’t seem to be a good fit for your case, don’t hesitate to give us a call. The Umansky Law Firm houses experienced criminal defense lawyers whose skills are tailored to handle your case in particular. Contact us today at 407-228-3838 for a free case evaluation.