Right to counsel

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Legislation, Termination of Parental Rights (State) - Birth Parents

A statute provides a right to counsel for all indigent parents in termination of parental rights hearings. Wash. Rev. Code § 13.34.090, Wash. Rev. Code § 13.34.062(2)(b).


While § 13.34.090 speaks in terms of providing counsel in all stages of a dependency proceeding, the court in In re Welfare of G.E., 65 P.3d 1219 (Wash. Ct. App. 2003), made it clear that this specifically includes termination of parental rights proceedings.


In circumstances where an indigent civil litigant has a statutory right to counsel at all stages of the proceeding (such as for dependency/TPR), that right continues through appeal, including discretionary appeals.  In re Grove, 897 P.2d 1252, 1258-1259 (Wash. 1995) (involving appeal of dependency).

Appointment of Counsel: categorical Qualified: no