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August 23, 2023

Principle 3: Control of Workloads

The workloads of Public Defense Providers should be regularly monitored and controlled to ensure effective and competent representation. Workloads should never be so large as to interfere with the rendering of quality representation or to lead to the breach of ethical obligations. Workload standards should ensure compliance with recognized practice and ethical standards and should be derived from a reliable data-based methodology. Jurisdiction-specific workload standards may be employed when developed appropriately, but national workload standards should never be exceeded. If workloads become excessive, Public Defense Providers are obligated to take steps necessary to address excessive workload, which can include notifying the court or other appointing authority that the Provider is unavailable to accept additional appointments, and if necessary, seeking to withdraw from current cases.