We do not charge for initial consultations.
Fixed fees; the amount depends on the nature of the case, the characteristics of the defendant, whether or not there are complicated forensics matters, and other things peculiar to each case.
For the very few matters on which we will do ad hoc work hourly, it is $500/hour, with 6 hour minimum.
Monday through Friday
8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and as otherwise arranged. For emergency after hours, call (760) 964-1321.
Criminal law functions in the exciting region between the rights of individuals and the power of the government, and if one feels moved by a mission to expand liberty and to repulse and to diminish power, which was the goal of the founding fathers, that is the sort of law he should practice. It is exciting to me, and I work hard and effectively there to leave the Republic a healthier and safer place for my boys to grow up in.
What do you like best about your career?
I assist and counsel those accused of crimes, and I force the government to negotiate the complex path that the Constitution and laws require before a lawful guilty verdict could properly be returned, and no attorneys are more effective nor more forceful in requiring the government to leap through all of the hoops that the Framers have erected than is Michael J. Kennedy. No attorney!
There can be only one attorney for a defendant in a case; it can be Michael Kennedy, or it can be the defendant exercising his constitutional right to represent himself. I have no problem with clients educating themselves on legal topics, and I think our system has gotten off-kilter somewhat due to the ignorance of the populace about what their rights and responsibilities are. At the same time, if people hire me to do their case, their opportunity to actively assist me on the law regarding their matter is quite limited, just as the brain surgeon does not hand the scalpel to the patient and allow him to start cutting his own scalp. My finite time must be devoted to educating the prosecutors and judges about the relevant law; I do not have the time to try to bring non-law trained clients up to the speed that many of those practitioners themselves sadly cannot grasp.
If they are germane to the case, and competently executed, I am delighted to review, and even possibly to use, them.
I do not have the time to teach those untrained in the law to represent themselves, nor are they likely to be able to afford the many hundreds of hours of attorney fees that it would require for me to educate them to a level even to begin to master things that regularly elude even law-degreed attorneys and judges.
I occasionally, case-by-case, supply pro bono assistance to people if I think they are being abused by the system or if there is an issue I want to take up to improve the lot of everyone. I do not broadcast the cases which I take pro bono, because I am not doing such to win a pro bono award but instead to help overcome the diminishing integrity of the practice of law and of the administration of justice system.
There is no one in this business who is more dedicated to his work than I, because this is not merely a job for me, but also a mission. I deplore bullies, and yet the system bullies people all the time, in the name of criminal "justice," and I am devoted to backing off and repelling systemic bullies with even more zeal than I would bring to the cause of backing down an individual one. People are increasingly oppressed by the government which touts itself as being concerned with proper and just treatment of its people, and it is part of my mission to back off that oppression, and I spend a lot of personal and professional time equiping myself to effectively do just that.
Experience, Michael J. Kennedy:
Federal Judicial Law Clerk, Central District of California;
Deputy District Attorney, Riverside County;
Solo Practitioner, Blythe, Palm Springs and Indio;
Judge Pro Tempore, Riverside County;
Deputy Public Defender, San Bernardino County;
Ledger & Kennedy, Palm Springs, California (General Partner);
Kennedy & Roe, Palm Springs, California (General Partner);
Law Office of Michael J. Kennedy [Proprietor]
Professor of Law, Desert College of Law, 2004-2005;
Mandatory Continuing education Lecturer, many venues and organizations, throughout California, and in several other states, on adult and juvenile defense topics, 1991 to present;
Guest Radio Host, KNWZ, 2007 to present
Top Lawyers in Palm Springs, 2010-2013
Lifetime Achievemment Award ["The Eddie"] from California DUI Lawyers Association, 2011-2012
Lifetime Achievement Award, The Public Defenders of California, Inc., 2013
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