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Public defenders are present at pre-trial hearings for misdemeanor cases and you may apply for their services. It is best to apply at the arraignment hearing. You may request the Application Form when you check-in for Court, complete the form while waiting, and submit it to the Clerk prior to the start of court or the Judge when your case is called. You will be assessed a co-pay of $75.00 if you qualify for the services. Additionally, you may be ordered to reimburse the public defender fund for the cost of an attorney.
If a public defender is appointed to your case at the arraignment, the public defender at your pre-trial may be different. However, if you are appointed a public defender at the pre-trial, this attorney will represent you at the court or jury trial.
Public Defender Application form - English
Public Defender Application form - Spanish