Who can be defended by a lawyer?

The respect of the rights of the defence is one of the fundamental principles of justice. Its concrete translation includes the right of everyone to the assistance of a lawyer and the right for a party to be represented by a lawyer.

The French judicial system does not know any situation so this is the right, for one part of appear before a judge, to seek advice from a lawyer. Even minor children can have the their, for example in the context of trial family.

However, this notion of support is very vague, as it does not imply that, except at the trial stage, the attorney’s right to advocate on behalf of his client. Moreover, if the lawyer must join at principle of the defense, this rule must be put into perspective by the fact that in most oral proceedings, it can be supported by a parent rather than a professional.

However, he suitable from Note that the assistance of a lawyer a trend to become widespread, including in areas and before bodies where the presence of counsel was traditionally rare.

The availability of legal representation in court proceedings is governed by more complex rules :

  • in the procedure known as “oral”, optional representation. This is often the case, for example, in the district court
  • other proceedings, in particular almost all civil litigation falling within the jurisdiction of the tribunal de grande instance, subject to a rule of compulsory representation, which entails substantial costs for the litigant
  • finally, it is impossible to represent in certain areas where the personal appearance of the parties is provided for
  • While lawyers are free to set their own fees, they also act in the context of ex officio commissions and legal aid