Can I Use a Public Defender for a Self-Defense Case?


In this week’s “Ask a Self-Defense Attorney” video, former state prosecutor turned criminal defense attorney Tom Grieve discusses the responsibly armed American’s option of using a public defender for a self-defense case.

Why Should I Hire a Criminal Defense Attorney for a Self-Defense Case? Why Can’t I Just Go With the Public Defender?

As a criminal defense attorney and former state prosecutor, Tom sometimes addresses the following questions: “Why should I hire you? Why should I hire any private criminal bar defense attorney? Why can’t I just go with the public defender?”

The fact of the matter is, criminal defense attorneys are extremely expensive. As a responsible gun owner who owns a firearm for self-defense, you have probably already given some thought to what would happen if you faced a legal battle after a self-defense shooting.

First of all, in order to be eligible to use a public defender, you need to prove that you are legally indigent — one without sufficient income to afford a lawyer for a defense in a criminal case. Many people don’t meet that criterion for the jurisdiction they are in.

Beyond the eligibility requirements, there are many other important things to consider. In this week’s video, one of the biggest things that Tom highlights is that a public defender is often handling hundreds of cases at once, so the amount of work that can be put toward any one case is limited.

About Attorney Tom Grieve, Grieve Law

Tom Grieve is a highly awarded former state prosecutor who started Grieve Law, LLC, which is now one of the largest criminal defense firms in Wisconsin. He is respected as one of the top criminal defense lawyers in the state and has developed a nuanced understanding of Wisconsin firearms laws throughout his years of experience. Although Tom’s legal background speaks for itself, he has gone above and beyond the call of duty, receiving his certification as a firearms instructor, participating as a regular speaker and panelist with the USCCA for live broadcasts, training videos and national expos, and even serving as a speaker and analyst on numerous radio stations, television stations, and both college and law school campuses.


The information contained on this website is provided as a service to USCCA, Inc. Members and the concealed carry community, and does not constitute legal advice. Although we attempt to address all areas of concealed carry laws in all states, we make no claims, representations, warranties, promises or guarantees as to the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information disclosed. Legal advice must always be tailored to the individual facts and circumstances of each individual case. Laws are constantly changing, and as such, nothing contained on this website should be used as a substitute for the advice of a lawyer for a specific case.

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