Discretionary appointment of counsel

Legislation, Abuse/Neglect/Dependency - Children

The court has discretion to appoint counsel for any child upon the court's own initiative or by request of anyone, and the state must inform children twelve or older of their right to request counsel. Wash. Rev. Code § 13.34.100(7).


In In re J.A., 2014 WL 2601713 (Wa. App. 2014) (unpublished), the Court of Appeals found that a trial court had abused its discretion under § 13.34.100 by not appointing counsel for a foster child, given the lack of stable placement for the child and the general risks of error in dependency proceedings.

Appointment of Counsel: discretionary Qualified: no