January 21, 2020 Public Defense

Crisis in Court-Appointed Counsel Rates: Searching for Sustainable Reform

Malia Brink

Assigned counsel systems are facing a crisis of underfunding. Success stories, including a recent effort in Wisconsin to raise the lowest hourly rate in the nation, demonstrate that through diligent advocacy, education, and sometimes litigation, policymakers can see the need for rate increases. But a question remains as to whether such success is sustainable, or whether the same battle will inevitably recur.

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