Court-Appointed Contract Counsel

Pinal County goes through a competitive procurement process to ensure that all of our Contract Counsels are qualified and able to provide legal services in their appointed areas of practice. Court-appointed contract counsel can only assist clients where the court has appointed them specifically, if you have not been determined indigent or you do not have a case that warrants counsel appointment, then they cannot take your case. Lawyers cannot take your case from another lawyer; only a judge may appoint another lawyer.

The Difference Between Public Defenders & Court-Appointed Attorneys

When the court appoints an attorney, they may appoint either the Public Defenders Office or the Court-Appointed Contract Counsel.

The Public Defenders Office is generally appointed on the following types of cases:

  • Adult Criminal Misdemeanor and Felony cases where there is no ethical conflict
  • Juvenile Petty Offenses, Criminal Misdemeanors, and Felony cases where there is no ethical conflict
  • Title 36 Civil Commitment Cases where there is no ethical conflict

If there is a conflict on any of these types of cases, the Court will then appoint a court-appointed contract counsel. Court-appointed contract counsel will also be appointed on the following types of cases:

  • Juvenile Dependencies
  • Best Interest Attorneys
  • Guardian Ad-Litems

Outside Counsel Resources

If you are an outside counsel and you have had your client determined to be indigent by the courts, please send a copy of the order of indigency determination by email to Public Defense Services.

We will then give you further instructions.

Community Outreach Request

If you are interested in having a Public Defender, Public Defense Policy individual, or Court-Appointed Contract Counsel come and speak at an event or host a booth at an event, please email Public Defense Services and we will get in touch with you shortly.