The Idaho Public Defense Commission (PDC) introduced a long anticipated workload standard rule aimed at beginning to cap the number of cases public defenders can take in a year in an effort to ensure that public defenders are able to spend ample time with their clients investigating their cases. However, the new workload standard maintains excessively high caseload numbers for attorneys and doesn’t provide enough relief to underrepresented indigent clients and overworked public defenders. The calculations used to create the proposed rules were done with incomplete data and only allocate ten hours per felony case and four hours per misdemeanor case, which doesn’t allow public defenders to fully investigate their client’s case, prepare for trial, travel, or provide social services.

Instead, we ask the legislature to reject the proposed PDC rule and instead replace it with longtime national caseload standards as outlined by the National Advisory Commission until more accurate statewide data can be collected

Status

Accepted

Session

2019

Bill number

Rule Docket 61-0108-1801

Position

Oppose

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