Can I fire my public defender?

Someone called me late last week and asked if he could fire his public defender and hire me. The public defender wasn't really investigating the case or preparing a defense, and the caller was afraid the public defender wouldn't be ready for trial. I have a lot of respect for public defenders--I used to be one--but I know that they're overloaded with too many cases, and it's easy for a case to fall through the cracks. Here was the problem: The trial was set to start today.

You can always fire your attorney, especially if he's not adequately preparing your defense. But when it will delay a trial, it's much more difficult--if not outright impossible. And there's nothing worse than the judge forcing you to go to trial with an attorney you don't trust and who isn't fighting for you.

If you're thinking of switching attorneys, call me at 678-666-4104 and tell me what's going on.