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  #1  
Old 02-16-2011, 03:48 PM
grgsgrl112 grgsgrl112 is offline
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Exclamation $5,000 to retain a lawyer? No way!

Ok so my hunny NEEDS a lawyer. Right now he has been dealing with public defenders....they are doing NOTHING for him!! UGH! I just got off the phone with a lawyer to try and retain him...800.00 for EACH case and he has 10!!! Thats crazy!! I dont know what to do???!!! My wonderful INMATE (ugh) said something about getting a pro bono lawyer, I know nothing on how to find one! I just want someone who will work for him!
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Old 02-16-2011, 04:32 PM
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Shit, I would have traded you, the best attorney in town wanted 10k per felony on my husbands cases.

I knew I couldnt afford him, but I was curious to see what he would have charged.

We had 2 attorneys, and he still got railroaded.
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Old 02-16-2011, 05:22 PM
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I know how you feel and it suck s to swallow the news and the freaking prices.... I can have a new car with that money in a year...
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Old 02-16-2011, 05:31 PM
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That is really kind of good here in CT i paid 2500.00 and that was just for pre trial it would have cost another 25,000. to go to trial.
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Old 02-16-2011, 05:36 PM
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OMG That's is ridiculous.... PD's are difficult to work with... So sorry for you. Hang in there.
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Old 02-16-2011, 06:16 PM
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5 grand actually sounds like a bargain.
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Old 02-16-2011, 06:18 PM
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We had one say $5,000 retainer, couldn't afford him.
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Old 02-16-2011, 06:28 PM
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Sorry, defending felonies is not cheap. Depending on the case and were you are, it will cost between $10,000 and $75,000. I don't think you realize the time and effort that has to go into these cases, plus the cost of experts, investigators, and administrative expenses.

Why would an attorney work for free (pro bono)? Why do you expect one would want to? Unless it is a high profile case, or a case of a serious injustice, you are not going to find a pro bono attorney. Did you say that your boyfriend has 10 cases? That doesn't sound like the type of case that is taken on pro bono. I have two big pro bono cases right now. One is a very high profile case where a mother was wrongfully convicted after her husband killed her baby; she is 100% innocent. Another is an Iraqi war hero, and the thanks he got for his lifetime of Traumatic Brain Injuries and PTSD was to be railroaded and sent to the DOC for 52 years. Does your boyfriend fit that type of profile? If not, he needs to stick with the public defender. If he has 10 felony cases, then he should be looking at a global plea deal, and the public defender is the best person to negotiate.
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Old 02-16-2011, 07:16 PM
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That is really kind of good here in CT i paid 2500.00 and that was just for pre trial it would have cost another 25,000. to go to trial.
thats about right and thats for a state case forget about federal
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Old 02-16-2011, 07:41 PM
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Pro bono? You can forget that!
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Old 02-16-2011, 07:44 PM
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well for my brother lawyer we had to put $3500 to retain a lawyer!!!
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Old 02-16-2011, 07:56 PM
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I agree with Co Lawyer. You're not going to find a pro bono attorney to work on 10 felonies, sorry, just ain't going to happen. I've taken a few, but they involve great injustices. I don't like high profile, and there are usually more than a few willing to take those cases. I can get a court appointment, guarantee payment for the whole thing whether we plea or go all the way to a jury trial. Why would I want to take your case pro bono?

Don't assume just because the PD isn't giving your man an update every day, or even accepting calls every week, that the PD is doing nothing. Don't assume the PD is incompetent.

If you want to hire a lawyer, hire a lawyer. If you can't afford one, keep the PD. I wouldn't waste time trying to find a pro bono lawyer.

BTW, what would your definition of "doing enough" be? Sometimes, I get the feeling that if their loved one isn't released from jail with the case dropped within a day or two of being hired, I'm "not doing anything". I'm just curious what your definition is.
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Old 02-16-2011, 07:57 PM
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A good defense attorney costs A LOT of money--you get what you pay for I believeI know I wouldn't do my job for free
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Old 02-16-2011, 08:10 PM
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I wish I only paid $5000.00. One bogus charge cost mega, mega bucks and in the end, the FPD is the one that did all the work.

I will tell you that the very expensive dude who did nothing,did talk to me nearly every day and night and weekend.... however, he did nothing for the client and was dismissed by the judge.

The federal public defender spoke to me twice and both times was very brief. He worked his tail off for the client and the case was dismissed.

I do not agree that you get what you pay for! I paid dearly for a fool that even the judge dismissed. I also say that you cannot judge an attorney based on how often they communicate with you or him.
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Old 02-16-2011, 08:19 PM
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I read the OP's other threads and now have more of an idea of what is going on. Bipolar boyfriend, on probation, picked up for five burglaries and fencing stolen property. This is not a case a pro bono attorney would be interested in, and him being bipolar is unlikely to be an issue -- unless he can show that the crimes were committed very close in time, like a spree, and he was in such a manic state that he had a diminished capacity. That, however, will be very difficult to prove.

Given the fact that he was already on probation, and committed all of these property crimes (some of which he confessed to), what he needs is an attorney who will negotiate a good plea bargain for him. The Public Defenders are the best attorneys to do this because they are in court every day, are familiar with the DA and Judges, and therefore know what would likely happen to him if he went at trial, what happened with similarly situated defendants, and what would be a fair and reasonable plea deal.

However, he could go away for a long time. If he were in Colorado, my guess would be between 30-50 years. However, Colorado has extremely harsh sentencing laws.
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Old 02-16-2011, 08:19 PM
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I'm writing to add my voice to Yourself and Colorado Lawyer. Handling a case well requires a lot of work, by the attorney and possibly by staff, investigators or experts. Just because you can't see the work being performed doesn't mean it's not happening. If you decide to hire a lawyer, be prepared to spend what it costs, or don't hire counsel and rely on the public defender.

Public defenders are overworked, and don't have as much time to talk to the client as the clients might like, but would you prefer to have your attorney spend two hours visiting him at the jail, or two hours working on thecase?
Some lawyers are good, and some aren't. But what you can see, or what the client can see, is an unreliable indicator of how hard the attorney is working or how good the attorney is. The judges and prosecutors and other defense attorneys know who the good ones are, but it's hard for you to figure out when you need to hire one. I sympathize with that problem, but I don't see a good way to fix it.

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Old 02-16-2011, 10:11 PM
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Quote:
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I agree with Co Lawyer. You're not going to find a pro bono attorney to work on 10 felonies, sorry, just ain't going to happen. I've taken a few, but they involve great injustices. I don't like high profile, and there are usually more than a few willing to take those cases. I can get a court appointment, guarantee payment for the whole thing whether we plea or go all the way to a jury trial. Why would I want to take your case pro bono?

Don't assume just because the PD isn't giving your man an update every day, or even accepting calls every week, that the PD is doing nothing. Don't assume the PD is incompetent.

If you want to hire a lawyer, hire a lawyer. If you can't afford one, keep the PD. I wouldn't waste time trying to find a pro bono lawyer.

BTW, what would your definition of "doing enough" be? Sometimes, I get the feeling that if their loved one isn't released from jail with the case dropped within a day or two of being hired, I'm "not doing anything". I'm just curious what your definition is.
I didnt post this thread to have people talk to me like an idiot. I was just venting. I havent been through this before. I have been through custody battles since my daughter was born and she is 7. My lawyer is $385. an hour. I have spent over 50,000 dollars in lawyers fees and court costs. Which could have went to college. I dont think 800. a case is bad. I am just angry at the fact that he is being charged with 10. And that puts me over 5,000. And most of the cases are bogus. Its not that I cant afford a lawyer, I didnt do this. I am not forking out my money that I need to raise my kids and keep a roof over their head when I dont know what the outcome will be. If it was only a few cases, then I would have. I havent a clue about anything criminal. Ive never been in trouble. I am just going by what he says. He told me there are groups that work pro bono and I was just inquiring about them, for him.
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:14 PM
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Quote:
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I'm writing to add my voice to Yourself and Colorado Lawyer. Handling a case well requires a lot of work, by the attorney and possibly by staff, investigators or experts. Just because you can't see the work being performed doesn't mean it's not happening. If you decide to hire a lawyer, be prepared to spend what it costs, or don't hire counsel and rely on the public defender.

Public defenders are overworked, and don't have as much time to talk to the client as the clients might like, but would you prefer to have your attorney spend two hours visiting him at the jail, or two hours working on thecase?
Some lawyers are good, and some aren't. But what you can see, or what the client can see, is an unreliable indicator of how hard the attorney is working or how good the attorney is. The judges and prosecutors and other defense attorneys know who the good ones are, but it's hard for you to figure out when you need to hire one. I sympathize with that problem, but I don't see a good way to fix it.

/s/ Rankin Johnson IV

I understand. I just think a "paid" lawyer will work harder. He sees a public defender for only 5 minutes before his court appearences. Well, his preliminarys. I just get nervous because they really dont know his side. And when I spoke to the lawyer today, he said you can find really hard working PDs and not so hard working PDs...its just the luck of the draw. I guess I will just have to cross my fingers and pray he gets a good one.
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:16 PM
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Sorry, defending felonies is not cheap. Depending on the case and were you are, it will cost between $10,000 and $75,000. I don't think you realize the time and effort that has to go into these cases, plus the cost of experts, investigators, and administrative expenses.

Why would an attorney work for free (pro bono)? Why do you expect one would want to? Unless it is a high profile case, or a case of a serious injustice, you are not going to find a pro bono attorney. Did you say that your boyfriend has 10 cases? That doesn't sound like the type of case that is taken on pro bono. I have two big pro bono cases right now. One is a very high profile case where a mother was wrongfully convicted after her husband killed her baby; she is 100% innocent. Another is an Iraqi war hero, and the thanks he got for his lifetime of Traumatic Brain Injuries and PTSD was to be railroaded and sent to the DOC for 52 years. Does your boyfriend fit that type of profile? If not, he needs to stick with the public defender. If he has 10 felony cases, then he should be looking at a global plea deal, and the public defender is the best person to negotiate.
I dont know what a global plea deal is
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colorado_Lawyer View Post
Sorry, defending felonies is not cheap. Depending on the case and were you are, it will cost between $10,000 and $75,000. I don't think you realize the time and effort that has to go into these cases, plus the cost of experts, investigators, and administrative expenses.

Why would an attorney work for free (pro bono)? Why do you expect one would want to? Unless it is a high profile case, or a case of a serious injustice, you are not going to find a pro bono attorney. Did you say that your boyfriend has 10 cases? That doesn't sound like the type of case that is taken on pro bono. I have two big pro bono cases right now. One is a very high profile case where a mother was wrongfully convicted after her husband killed her baby; she is 100% innocent. Another is an Iraqi war hero, and the thanks he got for his lifetime of Traumatic Brain Injuries and PTSD was to be railroaded and sent to the DOC for 52 years. Does your boyfriend fit that type of profile? If not, he needs to stick with the public defender. If he has 10 felony cases, then he should be looking at a global plea deal, and the public defender is the best person to negotiate.
Very unethical talking about on going cases. Accually unheard of !
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Old 02-16-2011, 11:14 PM
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Very unethical talking about on going cases. Accually unheard of !
That's not unethical, or even unusual. I talk about my cases all the time. I don't name the clients if I'm saying anything confidential. Colorado Lawyer said nothing confidential, and didn't name the clients.

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Old 02-16-2011, 11:16 PM
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I dont know what a global plea deal is
It means a single plea bargain resolving all the cases, as opposed to resolving each case individually. If there will be a plea bargain, it's almost certainly better to negotiate all the cases at once.

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Old 02-16-2011, 11:29 PM
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I understand. I just think a "paid" lawyer will work harder. He sees a public defender for only 5 minutes before his court appearences. Well, his preliminarys. I just get nervous because they really dont know his side. And when I spoke to the lawyer today, he said you can find really hard working PDs and not so hard working PDs...its just the luck of the draw. I guess I will just have to cross my fingers and pray he gets a good one.
I don't think it's accurate to say that a paid lawyer will work harder, but I suppose a paid lawyer will have more time. Public defenders are chronically overworked. And a paid lawyer will probably put more effort into letting him know what's going on.

A good lawyer, whether paid or not, will talk to the client to learn about the case and to discuss the choices for the client to make. But when there are no choices to make and nothing significant is happening, talking to this client takes a backseat to preparing for trial tomorrow for another client. Some of the best attorneys I know are public defenders.

I know this is frustrating, because you don't know what's going on and because you have so little control over it. I sympathize. But it won't help you to hire a lawyer if that lawyer isn't better than the public defender, or if the paid lawyer tells him to take exactly the same plea bargain that the public defender recommended.

Good luck,
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Old 02-16-2011, 11:46 PM
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There was a Frontline Documentary on the soldier, and the mother's case is in the local news every time something is filed. In fact, I just did a day long interview with an investigative reporter on this case. There is nothing unusual about attorneys talking about high profile cases. In fact, the elected DA himself published an Op Ed piece in the local paper about my client's case.

As to the OP: Nobody things you are an idiot. $800 per case is way low. There are no groups that take cases like your boyfriend's. He has a run of the mill case that are handled by public defenders all the time.

A "global" plea is where all the charges/ cases are disposed of in the same agreement. The DA might agree to dismiss some charges in exchange for guilty pleas to the rest, and then the sentence is agreed and stipulated to.

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Very unethical talking about on going cases. Accually unheard of !
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Old 02-17-2011, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grgsgrl112 View Post
I didnt post this thread to have people talk to me like an idiot. I was just venting. I havent been through this before. I have been through custody battles since my daughter was born and she is 7. My lawyer is $385. an hour. I have spent over 50,000 dollars in lawyers fees and court costs. Which could have went to college. I dont think 800. a case is bad. I am just angry at the fact that he is being charged with 10. And that puts me over 5,000. And most of the cases are bogus. Its not that I cant afford a lawyer, I didnt do this. I am not forking out my money that I need to raise my kids and keep a roof over their head when I dont know what the outcome will be. If it was only a few cases, then I would have. I havent a clue about anything criminal. Ive never been in trouble. I am just going by what he says. He told me there are groups that work pro bono and I was just inquiring about them, for him.
I read all the replies and did'nt see where anyone refered to you as a idiot.
Maybe instead of listening to your boyfriend, go by the advice given here.
10 charges, what makes this inmate so wonderful????
Maybe some time is the best thing for him, so he does'nt get anymore charges.
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