Standards for appointed counsel published for comment

The Michigan Supreme Court on Monday published for comment the first set of proposed standards for appointed counsel. As required by PA 93 of 2013, the standards were developed by the Michigan Indigent Defense Commission (MIDC) and submitted to the court for review. Public comment on the proposed standards will be received until May 1, and will be considered at a public hearing currently scheduled for May 18.

In a letter transmitting the proposed standards, MIDC Chair James Fisher noted:

"These initial standards tackle some of the major problems Michigan faces in the delivery of adequate indigent defense systems: training and education of counsel, the initial client interview, use of investigation and experts, and counsel at first appearance and other stages."

With submission of the proposed standards, the court is providing an opportunity for public comment just as it would with any other proposed rule.

Public comments and the comments of others will be posted online under the chapter affected by this proposal. An introduction to the standards, the proposed standards, and Fisher's submission letter are also posted on that page. Visit http://courts.mi.gov/courts/michigansupremecourt/pages/default.aspx and click on "Admin Matters & Court Rules" to view the information.

Online comments regarding the first set of proposed standards should be submitted to ADMcomment@courts.mi.gov. To comment using U.S. mail, please write to: Office of Administrative Counsel, PO Box 30052, Lansing, 48909.

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