Why should I hire a private criminal defense attorney?
Karin Riley Porter: Well, because you’re only going to be able to get court appointed counsel is if you’re indigent and the threshold for being indigent is extremely low in Virginia. So, that’s one reason. Generally speaking, you’re not going to be able to get a free lawyer if you’re gainfully employed.
Number two, aside from that, the benefit of hiring a private attorney is you get to pick your attorney. If you have court-appointed counsel, the court picks for you and even if you don’t like the person, or you don’t have confidence in that person, or if the person has only been a lawyer for six months, then you really have no choice. That’s just the way the process works.
So, if you are able to do your own research and interview on your own potential attorneys to assist you, then you will have a say who will represent you. Once you hire that attorney, then it is your case and that attorney works for you. So, then you have the opportunity to maintain that relationship with the attorney or, if he’s not a good fit, move on to a different attorney that might better suit your needs.