Welcome to the Federal Defender Program for the Middle District of Alabama.

The Federal Defender Program for the Middle District of Alabama (“FD-MDAL”), through our attorneys and staff, seeks to provide each of our clients with what we like to call “the best defense money can’t buy.” It has long been a widely held belief that in the criminal justice system, defendants with money do better than those without. It is that belief we seek to turn on its head. By our skill, our commitment, and our energy, we strive to practice law in a way that helps our clients feel supported.

We are not a government agency. We are a private corporation -- a law firm -- funded by a grant from the federal judiciary. In this regard and by design, the FD-MDAL maintains a degree of independence from the courts it serves, the judges before whom its lawyers practice, and the federal prosecutors who are our case-related adversaries. Our resources are impressive: if a case requires an expert, we have funds to hire the expert; if witnesses need to be located and interviewed or records need to be obtained, we have a staff of full-time defense investigators.

And to us, clients are human beings, not defendants with docket numbers: we are able to give each case and client the time and individual attention each deserves.

We are ever mindful that our office sits just blocks away from the sites of history making civil rights struggles, but also terrible events that continue to resonate in policies that impact our clients and their families here in the deep south. We strive to ensure that our clients understand that we are here to stand with them and work together toward justice.

If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together. --Lilla Watson