The attorneys and other staff employed by the Office of the Public Defender provide legal services to individuals who cannot afford to hire the services of a private attorney. The following are services we provide as well as those we do not.
Services We Provide
- Provides indigent defendants their constitutionally guaranteed right to representation when in a court of law
- Defends persons accused of felonious crimes, including homicide and death penalty cases
- Represents clients in developmentally disabled and conservatorship cases
- Represents juveniles in delinquency cases - http://www.saccourt.ca.gov/juvenile/delinquency/what-to-expect.aspx
- Defends persons charged with misdemeanor offenses
- Provides program support in the form of legal research, investigative services, and administration
- Proposition 47: Change Your Felony Conviction to a Misdemeanor Prop 47 Information Form
Services We Don't Provide
- Cases other than criminal - Generally speaking, if you are being sued, evicted, or have a worker's compensation claim, etc., you may qualify for assistance from other agencies.
- Traffic ticket representation - The Public Defender's Office does not represent individuals charged with violations punishable only by a fine. Some traffic offenses (e.g., driving under the influence, reckless driving, hit and run, driving on a suspended license) are misdemeanors; however, the Public Defender's Office may represent you on these offenses only if you cannot financially afford to hire an attorney.