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You Do NOT Have a Right to an (appointed) Attorney…in a Divorce

The 6th Amendment to the Constitution guarantees you the right to an attorney and a speedy trial, but this is concerning Criminal prosecutions…NOT divorce.

In divorce cases and most Family Law cases you do NOT have the right to a court appointed attorney.

The exception, Termination of Parental Rights cases, is only after a showing of financial inability.

The other time there’s a Court-Appointed Attorney, a Guardian Ad Litem, the parties still typically have to pay for that person from their own pockets and they represent the child, or more often are an investigative arm of the Court.

Do you need an attorney? Yes. Will the Court give you one? Probably not.

Matthew Thompson is a Family Law attorney in Mississippi.

Divorce, Child Custody & Child Support, Alimony, Contempt, Modification, Youth Court, TPR/ Adoption and Appeals.

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