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Accused of stalking Alec Baldwin. The case garnered nationwide attention, with USAToday, NYPost, and other media outlets following it closely.

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The Spodek Law Group understands how delicate high-profile cases can be, and has a strong track record of getting positive outcomes. Our lawyers service a clientele that is nationwide. With offices in both LA and NYC, and cases all across the country - Spodek Law Group is a top tier law firm.

Todd Spodek is a second generation attorney with immense experience. He has many years of experience handling 100’s of tough and hard to win trials. He’s been featured on major news outlets, such as New York Post, Newsweek, Fox 5 New York, South China Morning Post, Insider.com, and many others.

In 2022, Netflix released a series about one of Todd’s clients: Anna Delvey/Anna Sorokin.

Why Clients Choose Spodek Law Group

The reason is simple: clients want white glove service, and lawyers who can win. Every single client who works with the Spodek Law Group is aware that the attorney they hire could drastically change the outcome of their case. Hiring the Spodek Law Group means you’re taking your future seriously. Our lawyers handle cases nationwide, ranging from NYC to LA. Our philosophy is fair and simple: our nyc criminal lawyers only take on clients who we know will benefit from our services.

We’re selective about the clients we work with, and only take on cases we know align with our experience – and where we can make a difference. This is different from other law firms who are not invested in your success nor care about your outcome.

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Do I Need a Private Federal Defense Attorney or a Public Defender?

By Spodek Law Group | October 19, 2023
(Last Updated On: October 21, 2023)

Last Updated on: 21st October 2023, 09:08 am


Do I Need a Private Federal Defense Attorney or a Public Defender?

Facing federal criminal charges can be an incredibly stressful and confusing time. You may be wondering whether you need to hire a private federal defense attorney or if a public defender is sufficient. This article will walk you through the key factors to consider when making this important decision.

What is the Difference Between a Private Attorney and a Public Defender?

The main difference lies in who pays their salary. A private attorney is one you hire and pay yourself. A public defender is a lawyer appointed by the court who is paid by the government.

Public defenders work for public defender’s offices and are assigned to represent defendants who cannot afford a private attorney. They handle a high volume of cases. Private attorneys generally take on fewer cases so they can focus more attention on each client.

When Might a Public Defender Be Sufficient?

Public defenders provide a valuable service and are often highly competent attorneys. There are situations where relying on a public defender may be perfectly sufficient:

  • Your charges are relatively minor and you are likely to receive probation or a short sentence if convicted.
  • The evidence against you is weak or circumstantial.
  • You are happy to plead guilty and simply want help negotiating the best deal.

For example, a public defender may be fine for a misdemeanor marijuana possession charge with a first-time offender. The stakes are lower and the sentencing guidelines more predictable.

Why Hire a Private Federal Defense Attorney?

There are many benefits to hiring your own federal defense lawyer rather than using a public defender:

  • Private attorneys can devote significantly more time and resources to your case.
  • They have more flexibility to travel and conduct investigations.
  • A private lawyer is focused solely on you and your best interests, not juggling a huge caseload.
  • Private counsel will assemble a specialized defense team, including forensic accountants, private investigators, and other subject matter experts.
  • A private attorney may have deeper experience handling federal cases and be more familiar with prosecutors and judges.

Having a seasoned federal defense lawyer in your corner from day one can make a huge difference, especially when facing serious or complex charges.

Factors to Consider in Deciding Between a Public Defender and Private Attorney

Here are some key factors to weigh when deciding if you should hire private counsel or use a public defender:

  • Your Financial Situation – Can you afford a private attorney? They often charge $200-$500+ per hour.
  • Potential Penalties – A public defender likely suffices for minor charges. But consider private counsel if over 5 years in prison.
  • Case Complexity – Does your case have mountains of evidence or complex legal issues? If so, you may need a specialized federal defense lawyer.
  • Your Goals – Do you intend to take this to trial and fight the charges? If so, a private lawyer may be better equipped.

The more serious and complex your federal case, the more it makes sense to explore hiring private counsel. Federal sentencing guidelines are also extremely rigid – having an experienced lawyer fighting for the lowest possible sentence is crucial.

How to Choose the Right Private Federal Defense Attorney

If you decide to hire a private lawyer, put care into selecting the right one. Look for these key traits:

  • 10+ years handling federal cases in your district.
  • Strong track record getting federal charges dismissed pre-trial.
  • Experience taking federal cases to trial if needed.
  • Able to assemble a specialized team including forensic accountants, investigators, etc.
  • Has worked as a federal prosecutor – this inside experience is invaluable.
  • Check reviews and ask for case results.

A federal case is unlike any other. You want a lawyer who lives and breathes the complex world of federal criminal defense. Their experience and connections can make all the difference.

Can You Get a Private Attorney After Being Appointed a Public Defender?

Yes, you can switch from a public defender to private counsel. But it is crucial to do this early in the case, ideally at your first appearance. The longer you rely on a public defender, the harder it becomes to bring a new lawyer up to speed. Also, judges will not look favorably on requests to change counsel mid-case unless there is good cause.

What If You Cannot Afford a Private Attorney?

If you truly cannot afford counsel, do not lose hope. Public defenders provide skilled representation every day. Be proactive and:

  • Be honest about your financial situation so they can verify you qualify for their services.
  • Educate yourself on the law and potential penalties.
  • Stay in close communication with your lawyer.
  • Ask questions and provide them information to help your case.

Federal public defender offices have dedicated, talented attorneys. While hiring private counsel is ideal for serious cases, you can still build an effective defense working with a public defender.

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I was searching for a law firm with some power to help me deal with a warrant in New York . After 6 days I decided to go with Spodek Law Group. It helped that This law firm is well respected by not only the top law firms in New York , but the DA , Judge as well. I...

~Fonder Brandon

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It was my good fortune to retain Spodek Law Group for representation for my legal needs. From the beginning, communication was prompt and thorough. Todd, Kenneth and Alex were the first people I worked with and they all made me, and my company Qumana skincare feel comfortable and confident that the team was going to work hard for me. Everything...

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After meeting with several law firms, I chose the Spodek Law Group not only for their professionalism and experience, but for the personal attention given to me right from the initial consultation. It is important to recognize how crucial having the right legal team is when faced with potentially life altering events that impact families and the lives of loved...

~George Cherubini

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We Provide Superior Service, Excellent Results, At A Level Superior To Other Criminal Defense Law Firms. Regardless Of Where Your Case Is, Nationwide, We Can Help You.
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