New Jersey

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At a Glance (as of 2013)

Percentage of state funding: 100% (felonies & delinquencies); 0% (misdemeanors)
Percentage of local funding: 0% (felonies & delinquencies); 100% (misdemeanors)
Percentage of alternative funding: 0%
State commission: none
Branch of government: executive

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Structure & Funding of Indigent Defense Services

The provision of Sixth Amendment right to counsel services in the state of New Jersey has two distinct tiers: adult felony and juvenile delinquency cases handled by the statewide Office of the Public Defender, funded entirely by state general fund appropriation; and “non-indictable” misdemeanor cases handled by whatever method and funded at whatever level each individual municipality deems best. The chief public defender is a direct gubernatorial appointee. The municipal public defenders, in general, are private attorneys working part time under contract with the city government.

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Statutory Authority

N.J. Stats. 158A (state public defender); and N.J. Stats. 2B:24 (municipal public defenders).

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