Tag: Ten Principles

Missouri Governor shows why indigent defense crisis will not be fixed without defender independence

Pleading the Sixth: When the Missouri Public Defender, Michael Barrett, appointed the Governor to represent an accused indigent defendant, it brought national attention to the state’s longstanding underfunding of right to counsel services. Now, after a local judge ruled Barrett

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Idaho empowers state commission with new authority and new funding

Pleading the Sixth: On the heels of Utah’s comprehensive reform, the Idaho legislature steps up and empowers the state indigent defense commission created in 2014 to promulgate and enforce binding standards. The carrot for counties to comply comes in the form

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Utah reforms indigent defense with first-ever state dollars for trial representation

Pleading the Sixth: In these days of political strife and partisan antagonism, it is encouraging to see that government can still work and reach consensus for the benefit of the people, as demonstrated by the near unanimous passage of a

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Nevada Supreme Court bans flat fee contracting

Pleading the Sixth: On July 23, 2015, the Nevada Supreme Court banned the use of flat fee contracts in the provision of indigent defense services. The same order endorses the statewide commission format. Will the order force legislative change? The

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Wisconsin’s low attorney compensation rates create conflicts for the indigent accused

Pleading the Sixth: Imagine holding the same job for 30 years without ever once receiving a raise. If that job required you to pay for many of the associated costs of doing business, inflation alone would have significantly decreased your

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North Carolina’s independence issue exposed

Pleading the Sixth: Not all statewide commissions are equal. For many years, the North Carolina Commission for Indigent Defense Services has been upheld as an example of how best to create a statewide public defender commission. After all, when it

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