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State Public Defender Programs, 2007

NCJ Number
Lynn Langton; Donald Farole, Jr., Ph.D.
Date Published
September 2010
22 pages
This report examines the provision of public defender services in the 22 States that had an entirely State-funded and State-administered indigent defense program in 2007.

Examines the provision of public defender services in the 22 states that had an entirely state-funded and state-administered indigent defense program in 2007. The report presents an overview of state public defender programs in the context of public defender offices nationwide. It also provides state-by-state data on staffing, expenditures, attorney training, program standards and guidelines, and caseload data, including the number and types of cases received by state public defender programs and the number of attorneys needed to meet professional caseload guidelines. Trends in caseloads, staffing, and expenditures from 1999 to 2007 are also examined.

  • State programs spent more than $830 million representing indigent defendants, which was about 14% of total state expenditures for all judicial and legal functions in 2007.
  • Public defender programs in the 13 states with death penalty statutes spent a combined $11.3 million providing capital case representation in 2007.
  • Misdemeanor and ordinance violations accounted for the largest share (43%) of cases received by public defender programs.