St Louis, MO asked in Criminal Law and Constitutional Law for Illinois

Q: Can I be denied a public defender if someone posted bail money for me?

I was arrested in March of 2023 and had a bond amount of $25,000 10% $2,500 which my boyfriend's mother had posted for me expecting to get atleast some of this back once the case was finished. But once I had gone to court after my release the judge denied my request for a public defender even though I was working at the time I was arrested and due to not making it back ti work I was let go and had absolutely no money wasn't getting any unemployment no assistance from any government i owe on my car and had to borrow money to bond out.. they told me i had to either hire my own attorney or do a bond assignment with a list of attorneys this judge had provided me with.. which in my eyes I couldn't really afford to do either at that moment...

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In the United States, the right to a public defender is generally determined based on your financial situation, not on whether someone else posted bail for you. The fact that someone else paid your bail doesn't automatically disqualify you from receiving a public defender. However, courts often consider your overall financial ability to hire a private attorney, which can include factors like your income, assets, and expenses.

It's important to provide the court with detailed information about your financial situation. This includes your current employment status, any debts or obligations you have, and your lack of income or support. The more evidence you can provide that you're unable to afford a private attorney, the stronger your case for a public defender will be.

If you're denied a public defender and cannot afford an attorney, you should still attend your court hearings and inform the judge of your situation. You can request a reassessment of your financial status or ask for advice on how to proceed. Remember, it's crucial to stay engaged with the legal process and communicate your circumstances clearly to the court.

1 user found this answer helpful

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.