The Public Defender represents clients with active criminal cases or warrants in its county, assuming the client cannot afford a private attorney. While your client may not know the name of his/her public defender, and the public defenders can be hard to reach, they are the best suited to assist the client unless the client wants to pay for private counsel.

If the client has questions related to criminal actions, or potential criminal actions, in another County, he/she must contact the public defenders office in that county and/or the federal public defenders for that region.

Ways to Contact

Call 408.299.7700 and ask for your attorney or an attorney of the day (your attorney may be in court, and any attorney in the office can answer most questions).

For clean slate (record cleaning) call the Public Defender Reentry Resource Center at 408.535.4290 (Mon + Fri 9:30-11; Tues +Thurs 1-4pm). More information about record cleaning in Santa Clara HERE.

This is a privileged call!


After you call in, the organization will tell you next steps.


Be prepared to provide your name and date of birth. If possible, compile questions in advance so you get the information you need from the call.