|The Family Law Committee of the Suffolk
County Psychological Association
(SCPA) and Touro Law Center are
providing consultations for attorneys,
whose practice is in the area of family
law, including matrimonial issues.
Click here to find out more...
Welcome to the Website of the Suffolk County Assigned Counsel Defender
Both constitutional and statutory law require New York to provide counsel to
certain individuals financially unable to obtain counsel. In Suffolk County,
“mandated representation” is provided under the Suffolk County Assigned
Counsel Defender Plan, which was devised by the Suffolk County Bar
Association and the Suffolk County Criminal Bar Association pursuant to
County Law Article 18-B.
County Law Article 18-B authorizes Suffolk County to choose one or a
combination of several options for providing representation to eligible clients,
including public defender office; a private legal aid bureau or society or, in
Family Court matters, any corporation or voluntary association or organization
permitted to practice law under Judiciary Law § 495(7); or the assignment of
private practitioners pursuant to an assigned counsel plan. County Law § 722.
The objective of the Suffolk County Assigned Counsel Defender Plan is to
ensure high quality legal services for every individual represented under the
plan. The county is entitled to consider costs as a relevant factor in devising
its representation plan, but it cannot ignore its constitutional, statutory and
moral duty to provide quality counsel to those who cannot afford
The Plan's intent is to provide representation to indigent defendants and
provide remuneration to counsel. The fee award provision is not intended to
completely eliminate the pro bono aspect of a lawyer's role in representing
indigent defendants, but to compensate the attorneys who accept such
assignments at reasonable hourly rates.
This website provides information regarding the 18B program, including our
policies, requirements, samples and procedures for compensation, as well as
links to other helpful websites.
If you are interested in becoming a member of our 18B program, please
download the application and return it to our office.
Thank you to all of our participating panelists.
David H. Besso
|COMPENSATION RATE GUIDELINES FOR
Click here to read about the guidelines.
PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT PAROLE
ASSIGNMENTS ARE DIRECTLY MADE
THROUGH OUR OFFICE. NO ONE
SHOULD BE ACCEPTING SUCH
ASSIGNMENTS UNLESS CONTACTED
DIRECTLY BY ME.
|MENTAL HYGIENE TRAINING
COURSE FOR ARTICLE 10
The State of New York Mental
Hygiene Service held a training
course for 18B counsel to
become certified to handle
Article 10 appeals. The training
video and materials are
available online for interested
attorneys who were unable to
attend the training course. if
you are interested in this Article
10 Appeals Training, please call
my office for the link, user name
and password to access the
|DETAILED PROCESS FOR
ATTORNEYS ON HOW TO
PROCURE AN EXPERT
Please go to EXPERT link
and read informative article
on Expert Proceedure
pursuant to Section 722-C.
|To help expedite the processing of
appeals vouchers, the Appellate Division
has implemented changes in voucher
policy, effective April 1, 2011. Visit the
Appeals page to read the changes and
access the new worksheet.
|The Legislature passed a bill adding
legal aid bureaus and societies and other
private entities providing services under
County Law 722 to the list of entities that
cannot be charged for searching records
of the DMV and for copies of DMV
documents. THE LAW ALREADY
EXEMPTS PUBLIC DEFENDER OFFICES
FROM PAYING THOSE FEES.