Court-Appointed Lawyer Cuts Slash Freedoms Too
It’s no secret that court-appointed lawyers are overworked, underpaid and without the time and other resources to provide the same level of representation as private criminal defense lawyers. Court-appointed lawyers are not well-paid and their pay will continue to suffer if mega-budget cuts take shape as planned next year.
The federal public defender offices have been told they must reduce spending by 14% in 2014, on top of the roughly 9% suffered this year.
This budget decrease will impact our communities across the nation. Lay-offs for public defenders will mean a tough time for anyone accused of a crime to get a high- quality lawyer in their corner. Those public defenders remaining will have an enormous caseload and that means less time to thoroughly defend each client.