Right to counsel
While a state may have many statutes, court decisions, or court rules governing appointment of counsel for a particular subject area, a "Key Development" is a statute/decision/rule that prevails over the others (example: a state high court decision finding a categorical right to counsel in guardianships cases takes precedence over a statute saying appointment in guardianship cases is discretionary).
Legislation, Termination of Parental Rights (State) - Birth Parents
If it appears to the court in a proceeding regarding termination of parental rights (TPR) that the respondent wants an attorney and is financially unable to retain an attorney, the court shall appoint an attorney to represent the respondent. Mich. Comp. Laws § 712A.17c(4), Mich. Ct. R. 3.915(B). Michigan Court Rule 3.977(I)(1) adds that immediately after entry of an order terminating parental rights, the court shall advise the respondent parent in writing of the right to appellate review and to an attorney if the respondent is unable to afford one.
In In re Williams, 779 N.W.2d 286, 298 (Mich. Ct. App. 2009) (per curiam), the Michigan Court of Appeals took up the question sua sponte of the failure to appoint counsel for an nonoffending parent in a termination case pursuant to the statute, noting that "we cannot ignore a process that casts serious doubt on the integrity of the proceedings and would risk substantial injustice if allowed to stand unexamined." The court found that from the moment where the state supplemented its petition against the mother to add that the nonoffending father was unable to continue his custody of the children, the father was essentially a respondent entitled to counsel. The majority opinion also held that in calculating indigence, it is error to include the income of an adult respondent's parents, even if they cohabitate.
If "yes", the established right to counsel or discretionary appointment of counsel is limited in some way, including any of: the only authority is a lower/intermediate court decision or a city council, not a high court or state legislature; there has been a subsequent case that has cast doubt; a statute is ambiguous; or the right or discretionary appointment is not for all types of individuals or proceedings within that category.
Appointment of Counsel: categorical Qualified: no