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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: yes
Branch of government: judicial


Structure & Funding of Indigent Defense Services

The Virginia Indigent Defense Commission (VIDC) is an independent, state-funded body in the judicial branch responsible for the delivery of right to counsel services across the state. Commission members are appointed by the following diverse authorities: the chairmen of the House and Senate Committees for Courts of Justice; the chairman of the Virginia State Crime Commission; the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court; the Virginia State Bar (two attorneys); Governor (2 appointees) the Speaker of the House of Delegates (3 appointees); and, the Senate Committee on Rules (3 appointees). It has authority to set standards and to enforce compliance against those standards through its central office in Richmond.

The VIDC’s executive director administers a statewide roster of qualified assigned counsel handling all cases where there is no public defender office, and handling conflicts where there is such an office. The executive director, however, has limited authority to select the heads of the local public defender offices, who are instead selected by a hiring committee established solely for such purpose and then disbanded (the VIDC executive director sits on each hiring committee, whenever constituted).

Statutory Authority

VA Code § 19.2-163.01 through 19.2-163.04

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