Am I Entitled To A Public Defender?

public defenderQuestion:

I was recently served with a contempt motion. I do not have an attorney and my hearing is approaching.

I was advised to get a continuance and request a public defender.

What is my best option going into this without an attorney?


While I am not licensed to practice law in your state, I am licensed to practice in Pennsylvania and can give you some general guidance with respect to this issue.

First, I recommend attending a contempt hearing represented by counsel. A contempt proceeding is by nature a very serious court proceeding where a lit is at stake.

Here in Pennsylvania public defenders are not available in most family law matters, and only in some counties are they provided as it relates to support contempt (in which case they are present in court the day of the hearing, to assist you).

If you appear in court or file a continuance here you have submitted to notice. You would not be able to claim you did not have proper notice once acknowledging receipt by requesting the continuance.

It is not clear what the contempt is for but I strongly encourage you to speak with counsel.

To arrange an initial consultation to discuss divorce rights for men with a Cordell & Cordell attorney, contact Cordell & Cordell.

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Shawn Garrison is an Online Editor for Lexicon, focusing on subjects related to the legal services of customers, Cordell & Cordell and Cordell & Cordell UK. He has written countless pieces dealing with the unique child custody and divorce issues that men and fathers face. Through his work on,, and, Mr. Garrison has become an authority on the complexities of the legal experience and was a content creator for the YouTube series “Dad’s Divorce Live” and additional videos on both the Dad’s Divorce and Cordell & Cordell YouTube channels. Mr. Garrison has managed the sites of these customers, and fostered the creation of several of their features, including the Cordell & Cordell attorney and office pages, the Dad’s Divorce Newsletter, and the Cordell & Cordell newsletter.

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