North Carolina’s Indigent Defense Services is changing the way it does business with court-appointed attorneys.
Since IDS’s founding in 2001, it has appointed attorneys to represent poor defendants on a case-by-case basis and paid case-specific fees for the work. But soon, attorneys throughout the state will have to submit proposals to IDS to prove that they are qualified to handle court-appointed work and then enter into flat-rate monthly contracts.
The General Assembly ordered the switch from fees to contracts in a special provision that was tucked inside July’s budget bill. Danielle M. Carman, assistant director and general counsel for Durham-based IDS, said she learned about the proposal for a contract-based system shortly before it was enacted.
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