Can I present an affidavit signed to court without a lawyer?

I have the lawyer that is going to make the affidavit and the witnesses to sign it, but i can’t keep up with paying the lawyer. What would be the process of presenting this affidavit to court on my hearing date?

Asked on June 16, 2009 under Criminal Law, Florida

Answers:

M.S., Member, Connecticut Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If you already have an attorney who you have paid to prepare the affidavit, you should really ask that attorney for his or her advice with respect to the best way to use it.  Depending on the particular facts of your case, the most effective way to use the affidavit may vary, and the attorney who has prepared the affidavit is presumably familiar with the intimate details of your case and therefore is in the best position with respect to advising you how to use it.  However, if, for whatever reason, that attorney cannot advise you in this respect, you may want to let the prosecutor know that you have obtained the affidavit, and give the prosecutor a general summary of what the affidavit says.  An affidavit, on its own, would not be admissible at trial due to the fact that it is generally hearsay.  However, the affidavit would indicate the substance of the witness's potential testimony.  Therefore, if the prosecutor is made aware of a witness that will provide potentially exculpatory testimony, that may influence the prosecutor's decision to resolve the case favorably.  Nevertheless, your current attorney is really in the best position to give you advice with respect to how to use the affidavit that he or she has prepared, regardless of whether you can continue to retain his or her services.


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