How to Get Legal Counsel When You Can’t Afford It
At some point in time, you will find yourself needing an attorney. But what happens when your budget doesn’t have room to pay the expensive legal fees?
Not to fear, there are several ways that you can actually get the attorney’s bill for free, but there’s always a catch — remember, in most cases, attorneys have to live too, so the true cost may not be free, but you will not pay anything up front.
Right To A Lawyer
Turn on a TV or listen to the radio and you’ll always hear about an attorney that will represent someone in a criminal matter. The law legally entitles anyone accused of a criminal offense, from child abuse to murder one, in any criminal case, to an attorney. If a person cannot afford an attorney, either a public defender will be given to the defendant or in the event a court finds a person to be indigent and unable to pay an attorney’s fees, they may even give a private attorney.
A contingency lawyer is one that will defend you and only collects the fees if they recover any money for you, usually an agreed percentage (such as 33 1/3%) if you are injured and the attorney believes they can recover. The catch here is that you will have to pay costs, such as expert witness testimony, jury fees and court filing costs which can add up to a tidy sum of money. But if you are successful in your case, the judge will order your adversary to pay you back for those costs.
A legal aid attorney is one that will help people with very low incomes to assist with financial matters, such as eviction notices, denial of unemployment benefits, and credit counseling. In most cases, this kind of legal aid is given to someone who has an income below 125% of the poverty line. Check with the American Bar Association’s web site to see if you qualify for this kind of aid. Some exceptions to the poverty line qualification will be granted for the elderly, people in the military, and people who are disabled or have other special circumstances.
Sometimes if you have a social cause or some major injustice being performed (such as sexual harassment, freedom of speech or discrimination, along with some others), an attorney may choose to take the case pro bono, which is without cost, for a number of reasons. Either he or she thinks the cause is right or the person might want the PR that it brings as well. Always remember that if your cause is right, you might have an attorney that believes that as well.
Many people are surprised to find that you can even use coupons and coupon codes for legal services. The best way to find the coupons that will work for you is to do a search that includes the city you live in—just type in the city with “legal coupons” and you’ll be surprised to see what pops up.
You shouldn’t be afraid to take your case to court if you have the right causes, just because you believe the attorney will not be affordable. There are options for for people at all levels of income.
Mary Blanchard is a self diagnosed coupon addict! She loves to find the best deals, share her advice and investigate options. As an addict, she provides information for other addicts or just those who want to find the best buy for their dollar. One of her favorite sites to shop around for deals is the Coupon Croc in the UK, check them out to see why.