What to do if my 28 year old son was arrested for the second time for DWI and cannot afford an attorney or qualify for a PD?

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What to do if my 28 year old son was arrested for the second time for DWI and cannot afford an attorney or qualify for a PD?

First time pled to impaired 4 years ago. He works full time and grosses $500 per week. We were told he did not qualify for legal aid because he works even though his entire salary is for bills. He also has mental problems for years but refuses to go to a psychiatrist or doctor. If he quits, would he then qualify? If he gets fired would he qualify? He has mental problems and refuses to go to a doctor and my wife and I have been dealing with this for 12 years. Is there a way an attorney can ask the judge or D.A. to have him evaluated and if so, make it part of his conviction?

Asked on November 22, 2012 under Criminal Law, New York

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Given the situation that your son finds himself in I suggest that if he cannot afford an attorney or qualify for a public defender that he go down to the local legal aid clinic in his community to see what assistance can be given him. The problem is that people need to get paid for legal services provided and if your son cannot afford to pay for such or qualify for the public defender's office he is in a difficult situation.

As to mental competency, such issue needs to be raised by your son at the upcoming hearing if he does not have an attorney representing him.


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