Monday, April 8, 2019

Article on Maine's system for providing counsel to indigent criminal defendants

The Sixth Amendment Center has published a short article criticizing the system used in Maine to provide counsel to indigent defendants.  According to the article, Maine is the only state in the country that provides all indigent defense services through private attorneys which makes it difficult to predict and contain costs and to supervise private attorneys to ensure they can and do provide effective representation. The article concludes that Maine struggles with both, as the Maine Commission on Indigent Legal Services is expected to oversee the representation by and cost of nearly 600 attorneys, handling more than 30,000 cases each year in 47 courthouses presided over by approximately 90 justices, judges, and magistrates, with a staff of just three people. 

You can read the full article here.

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