GOOD PRACTICES FOR PANEL ATTORNEY PROGRAMS IN THE U.S. COURTS OF APPEALS

GOOD PRACTICES FOR PANEL ATTORNEY PROGRAMS IN THE U.S. COURTS OF APPEALS

by Jon Wool
     
 
More than 9,000 criminal defendants who file appeals in United States federal courts each
year are financially eligible for government-funded counsel under the Criminal Justice Act
(CJA).1 In more than half of these cases, the defendants are represented by attorneys from a
federal defender organization, and the others are assigned a private attorney,

Overview

More than 9,000 criminal defendants who file appeals in United States federal courts each
year are financially eligible for government-funded counsel under the Criminal Justice Act
(CJA).1 In more than half of these cases, the defendants are represented by attorneys from a
federal defender organization, and the others are assigned a private attorney, commonly
referred to as a “CJA panel attorney.” Each of the nation’s 12 geographic circuit courts of
appeals has its own system for assigning counsel. Each has a written plan that provides a
broad outline of how it will manage this process; subsection (a)(3) of the CJA provides for
each circuit judicial council to supplement its district court CJA plans with appellate
provisions. Many details of a court of appeals’ practices, however, are not captured in these
plans, or in court rules or other documents, and there is no nationwide compilation of court of
appeals practices.
The Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts contracted with the Vera Institute to
explore circuit panel attorney systems and to identify those practices that promote quality
representation and efficient administration of the CJA panel attorney program at the circuit
level. To that end, Vera researchers reviewed CJA-related documents and conducted
telephone interviews with a number of judges, court administrators, CJA panel attorneys, and
federal defenders in every circuit. In addition, researchers conducted in-person interviews to
examine circuit-specific practices in the three circuits—the Second, the Tenth, and the
Eleventh—that were selected for in-depth inquiry.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
2940149069897
Publisher:
ReadCycle
Publication date:
12/17/2013
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
59 KB

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