Tag: assigned counsel

A lack of effectiveness and financial oversight define Maine’s right to counsel system

Maine state outline map

Pleading the Sixth: Maine is the only state in the country that provides all indigent defense services through private attorneys. There are two principal reasons that other states have moved away from using solely private attorneys. First, it is difficult to

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Oregon’s complex bureaucracy obscures just another fixed fee system

Pleading the Sixth: Oregon stands as a cautionary tale regarding indigent defense reform. Often extolled (including by this author) as a working model that provides effective public defense services through a statewide system of contracts, a new comprehensive evaluation by

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Federal committee recommends independence of the defense function

Pleading the Sixth: Kept under wraps since being issued in November 2017, the report of the committee appointed by U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Roberts to study the provision of the Sixth Amendment right to counsel in the federal courts

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Wisconsin Supreme Court increases compensation to some, but not all, indigent defense attorneys

Pleading the Sixth: On June 27, 2018, the Supreme Court of Wisconsin ordered the compensation paid by counties to assigned counsel appointed by the courts raised from $70/hour to $100/hour beginning in January 2020, while the compensation paid by the state

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Tennessee Supreme Court backs major right to counsel reforms

Pleading the Sixth: The Tennessee Supreme Court released a press statement announcing its unanimous support for comprehensive indigent defense reforms, including the creation of a statewide indigent defense commission and a state appellate defender office, and the first increase in

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Will the Virgin Islands finally end the practice of conscripting non-qualified lawyers to represent the indigent accused?

Pleading the Sixth: Although the Virgin Islands has a territorial public defender office, trial court administrative rules historically authorized judges to conscript any attorney barred in the territory – divorce lawyers and real estate lawyers included – to provide representation

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