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Hammer O'Justice
Hammer O'Justice, Criminal Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 4498
Experience:  Almost 12 years of legal experience, primarily in criminal law
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How do you sue the public defenders office

Customer Question

How do you sue the public defenders office for malpractice?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Hammer O'Justice replied 2 years ago.
Hello.
The State has waived immunity for public defenders, so (unlike in some states) a malpractice action can be filed against them:
http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0700-0799/0768/Sections/0768.28.html
To have a legal malpractice action against a criminal attorney, you would have to prove that (1) the attorney represented you; (2) the attorney neglected a reasonable duty; and (3) that the attorney’s negligence was the proximate cause of your loss/damages. In addition, if you were convicted at trial, you will have to have your case dismissed or otherwise thrown out on post-conviction or appeal to sue for malpractice (or if you pleaded guilty, you will have to prove your actual innocence). If you think you can prove these things, I would suggest seeking out a couple of professional malpractice attorneys to run your case by to see if they think you have a case that is worth pursuing. The Florida Bar has a referral service to help you find a lawyer:
http://www.floridabar.org/lawyerreferral
If you don't have enough to sue for malpractice and you want to pursue the matter, you can also file a complaint with the state bar.
http://www.floridabar.org/TFB/TFBConsum.nsf/0/c5b7d247a0c9c45a85256b2f006c6186!OpenDocument&Click=
Hope this information helps.