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Legal-Guru, Criminal Justice Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 1366
Experience:  Experienced Criminal Trial Attorney since 1998.
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I am in need of an attorney for a court date of July 2. Its

Customer Question

I am in need of an attorney for a court date of July 2.
It's a misdemeanor charge for failure to stop in time, and failure to report an accident. (I left the scene).
I am 52 and never been in trouble before. I have a panic disorder and I had an attack when the person hit his brakes and I swerved to keep from hitting him. Unfortunately I did hit him, and left the scene. I am ashamed and embarrassed, but there it is. I need help. I don't sleep and I'm very scared.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Legal-Guru replied 4 years ago.
Welcome to JustAnswer.

I certainly understand how stressful this must be. Have you appeared before a judge yet, and if so, did he/she order you to have an attorney on your July 2nd court date?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
I have not seen a judge yet. My date is July 2.
Expert:  Legal-Guru replied 4 years ago.
Ok, not every court requires that you have an attorney for a misdemeanor, but many do and it is always advisable to have one. If you do not know for sure if the court requires you to have an attorney, call the judge's office where you are scheduled to appear. The judge's clerk or bailiff should be able to tell you for sure.

Even if you are not required to have an attorney, I strongly advise you to have one if at all possible. If you cannot afford one, you can try applying for a court appointed attorney. You can also ask the judge's clerk/bailiff about how you apply for court appointed counsel. They likely have an application form that you can fill out before your court date. I will caution you that if you are employed and posted a bond (if there was one), many judge's will not find that you qualify for a court appointed attorney.

If an attorney is required and you do not qualify for a court appointed attorney, then you are left with hiring an attorney. I would say that $2,000 is very reasonable for that kind of charge. However, if you cannot come up with that much money by July 2nd many lawyers will let you pay a certain amount up front and pay the rest out. It is likely that they will continue your case until they are completely paid. You may have to do a little more searching for a lawyer that will take payments, and you may even have to pay a slightly higher total fee.
Expert:  Legal-Guru replied 4 years ago.
You rated my response as "bad service". Did I not answer your question or did you have a follow up question?