This page lists all of the most recent developments on civil right to counsel across the country. These could be newly created rights to counsel, significant publications, public events, advocacy efforts, or other things that don't fit into a neat category.
MD high court reaffirms right to counsel in civil contempt cases
The Court of Appeals of Maryland has indirectly reaffirmed that people facing incarceration for civil contempt still have a right to counsel.
South Carolina court extends statutory right to counsel to private TPR cases
The SC Supreme Court held that S.C. Code § 63–7–2560 does not distinguish between public and private termination cases, so it applies to both.
Indiana court allows appointment in small claims case
Indiana Court of Appeals said a trial court's appointment of counsel in small claims case was not improper.
NY Chief Judge calls for counsel in all foreclosure cases
NY Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman has said he wants there to be an attorney in every foreclosure case in the state.
DOJ implements nationwide program for counsel for detainees with mental disabilities
In the wake of successful litigation, DOJ announced it would provide legal help to all immigrants with mental disabilities.
Detainees with mental disabilities have right to assistance, says federal court; deportees may return
A federal district court held that detainees with mental disabilities have the right to assistance in their immigration removal cases.
Georgia Legislature establishes right to independent counsel for children in deprivation cases
Children have a right to their own counsel in deprivation proceedings, thanks to a 2013 amendment to the code.
Pennsylvania hearings on civil legal aid discuss right to counsel
The PA Senate Judiciary Committee held hearings in 2013 about the civil legal justice gap, and many people testified about a right to counsel.
NY civil legal aid hearings invoke right to counsel
At hearings convened by NY Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman, advocates testified about the justice gap and civil right to counsel.
Constitution requires counsel for children in adoptions, MA high court rules
The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts found a state due process right to counsel for children in private adoption cases.
Kansas Supreme Court recognizes right to counsel in sex offender commitment cases
The Kansas Supreme Court has said there is a right to counsel in sexually violent predator commitment proceedings.
Model Code for Education includes right to counsel
The 2012 version of the Model Code on Education and Dignity contains significant right to counsel provisions.
Constitution requires counsel for parents in adoptions, MA high court rules
The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts found a state due process right to counsel for indigent parents in private adoption cases.
San Francisco enacts ordinance declaring intent to become first "right to civil counsel city"
The San Francisco Council passed an ordinance declaring an intent to become the first "right to civil counsel city".
ABA Adopts Model Act on Child's Right to Counsel
In 2011, the ABA endorsed the Model Act for Children in Abuse, Neglect and Dependency Proceedings, which covers right to counsel.
MA completes comprehensive housing pilots, starts another round
A set of housing right to counsel pilots were completed in Massachusetts in 2012, and another round started in 2013.
Ohio Supreme Court extends right to counsel to guardianship review cases
The Ohio Supreme Court ruled that as a matter of statutory construction, there is a right to counsel in reviews of existing guardianships.
Maryland Access to Justice Commission Releases RTC Implementation Report
The ATJC's report described how new rights to counsel might be implemented in MD, and put a price tag on such an implementation.
Illinois adds counsel for involuntary sterilization proceedings
A new Illinois law provides a right to counsel where the state proposes to sterilize a ward of the state.
Michigan Supreme Court clarifies right to counsel for adults
The Michigan Supreme Court clarified that the right to counsel for parents in child protective proceedings includes the preliminary hearing.
Connecticut extends right to counsel for children in child welfare cases
The legislature enacted a bill for child protection cases requiring children to be appointed a separate child-directed attorney and a GAL.
Trial courts have inherent power to appoint counsel, says Supreme Court of Montana
The Montana Supreme Court sent a reminder to trial courts that they have the inherent power to appoint counsel in any civil case.
WA Legislature tweaks appointment of counsel for children
A bill passed in 2010 requires children 12 years and older to be informed of their right to request counsel in dependency cases.
ABA releases Model Act and Basic Principles for civil right to counsel
In 2010, the ABA released the Model Access Act and Basic Principles of a Right to Counsel in Civil Legal Proceedings.
Minors in DV cases should get counsel, New Jersey court says
A lower New Jersey court held that a minor plaintiff in a DV restraining order case should have the benefit of counsel.
Right to counsel of terminations extends to appeals, Indiana Supreme Court says
The Indiana Supreme Court held the statutory right to counsel for parents in terminations of parental rights cases extends to appeals.
Michigan Supreme Court dodges case on right to counsel in termination cases
The Michigan Supreme Court declined to review a case where the trial court failed to appoint counsel for a parent in a termination case.
Massachusetts establishes right to counsel in adult guardianship proceedings
In 2009, the new Massachusetts Uniform Probate Code established a right to counsel upon request in adult guardianship/conservatorship cases.
Tennessee legislature extends right to counsel for parents to adoption proceedings
The Tennessee legislature amended the code to extend the right to counsel to parents in adoption proceedings.
Federal court rules Georgia children have right to counsel in deprivation cases
A federal court found that the Georgia Constitution required counsel for children in deprivation cases.