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In actuality, the state will only provide you a lawyer to defend you in a criminal case, and then only certain criminal cases (I think in Missouri it is cases where the penalty is normally jail time, not cases where they normally only fine you, like traffic ticket). Even then, state provided legal defense is usually horrendous- public defenders are very over worked and simply don't have the time to help their clients.

There should be legal counsel available, and it should be a lot easier to navigate the system; but unfortunate in the US (and probably most other countries) that is simply not the reality.

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