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At a Glance (as of 2013)

Percentage of state funding: 100%
Percentage of local funding: 0%
Percentage of alternative funding: 0%
State commission: none
Branch of government: executive


Structure & Funding of Indigent Defense Services

The Office of the Public Defender is a statewide, state-funded public defender system in the executive branch led by a chief public defender appointed directly by the governor. Full time staff attorneys represent juvenile and adult clients in all levels of court from branch offices located in each of Delaware’s three counties.


The public defender office recently created an Office of Conflicts Counsel to oversee the state’s conflict program (previously, it was a function of the Administrative Office of Courts), which is generally provided by private bar attorneys working under contract for an annual flat rate (though certain conditions trigger counsel to earn an hourly rate above and beyond the annual flat fee).

Statutory Authority

29 Del. C. § 4601 through 4608

Source of data: original research conducted by Sixth Amendment Center staff.