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The service of the lawyer is as a rule of voluntary nature and the client himself/herself decides whether or not to defend his rights alone or with the assistance of the counsel. However, the Georgian legislation defines the cases in which the appointment of the counsel does not depend on the will of the party.

In criminal procedure, the legislation provides a list of cases, in which the presence of the counsel is mandatory. The appointment of the counsel to the defendant is mandatory when:

  • She or he is has not reached the full age;
  • She or he is not familiar with the language of the criminal law;
  • She or he suffers physical or mental disorder preventing him/her from self-defense;
  • If the court has made a decision on psychiatric-forensic testing;
  • If a verdict implies a life term under the Criminal Code of Georgia for a crime she/he committed;
  • If she or he is engaged in negotiations on plea baraining;
  • If the criminal case is heard by a jury panel;
  • If she or he refrains from appearing at the law enforcement body;
  • If she or he has been expelled from the courtroom;
  • If she or he is an unidentified person;
  • In specific cases stipulated by the Georgian Procedural Criminal Code.

In cases of the mandatory defense the costs of the counsel shall be paid by the State, notwithstanding the financial situation of the defendant.

In civil cases, the legislator identifies one case of mandatory defense: when the appointment of guardian to the person is being decided.

On the procedure of the appointment of the lawyer see here.