Q: How much can or will legal aid help you?
F1 case, my girlfriend is being charged with complicity to aggravated robbery. 100,000 bail.
A: There are legal aid groups and there are appointed attorneys. If someone is charged with a crime, they may ask the court for an appointed attorney. Courts will typically have the person complete a financial affidavit to determine whether they financially qualify. If they do, the court will appoint an attorney to represent the person.
Legal aid groups each provide different services, often helping people who cannot afford an attorney but are not eligible for appointed counsel because of their circumstances or the type of case.
A: Legal aid won't help at all. They don't do criminal matters. If your girlfriend cannot afford an attorney, the court will either assign the case to the office of the public defender, or assign it to a private attorney. In Cuyahoga County, the public defender takes half the cases and the rest are assigned to private attorneys who are paid (though not very well) by the county. Considering the severity of the charge, she should do everything she can to hire her own attorney.
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