Private Defender Program (2800P)

Program Services

The County of San Mateo does not include a traditional public defender’s office. Instead, the County contracts with the San Mateo County Bar Association to provide indigent criminal defense. The San Mateo County Superior Court appoints the Private Defender Program to represent all individuals financially eligible for counsel at public expense. The contracting arrangement began in 1968 and the panel currently includes 114 lawyers of which more than half have over 15 years of criminal and/or juvenile law experience.

Number of Criminal Arraignments, both limited and general jurisdiction (adult and juvenile) Remains Steady


Number of Client Complaints Remains Below Target

FY 2016-17 Mid-Year Story Behind Performance

Number of Criminal Arraignments, both limited and general jurisdiction (adult and juvenile)
The number of criminal arraignments increased in FY 2015-16. Mid-Year data for FY 2016-17 is not yet available.
Number of Client Complaints
The number of client complaints related to relationship issues decreased in FY 2015-16, and the number of complaints regarding performance issues increased slightly in FY 2015-16. Mid-Year data for FY 2016-17 is not yet available.
Author: Heather Ledesma, Principal Management Analyst     Contact Email: hledesma@smcgov.org     Date Updated: 03-01-2017