13B.4  Duties and powers of state public defender.

1.  The state public defender shall coordinate the provision of legal representation of all indigents under arrest or charged with a crime, on appeal in criminal cases, and on appeal in proceedings to obtain postconviction relief when ordered to do so by the district court in which the judgment or order was issued, and may provide for the representation of indigents in proceedings instituted pursuant to chapter 908. The state public defender shall not engage in the private practice of law.

2.  The state public defender shall file with the clerk of the district court in each county served by a public defender a designation of which local public defender office shall receive notice of appointment of cases. Except as otherwise provided, in each county in which the state public defender files such designation, the state public defender or its designee shall be appointed by the court to represent all eligible indigents, whether the case is criminal or juvenile in nature. The appointment shall not be made if the state public defender notifies the court that the local public defender will not provide legal representation in cases involving offenses as identified in the designation by the state public defender.

3.  The state public defender may contract with persons admitted to practice law in this state for the provision of legal services to indigent or partially indigent persons.

4.  The state public defender is authorized to review any claim made for payment of indigent defense costs and to take the following action if the state public defender believes a claim is excessive:

a.  If the claim is from a noncontract attorney, the state public defender shall request a review by the court granting the claim as to the reasonableness of the claim within thirty days of receipt of the claim.

b.  If the claim is from a contract attorney, the state public defender shall request a review by the appointing court as to the reasonableness of the claim within thirty days of receipt of the claim.

5.  The state public defender is authorized to contract with county attorneys to provide collection services related to court-ordered indigent defense restitution of court- appointed attorney fees or the expense of a public defender.

6.  The state public defender shall report in writing to the general assembly by January 20 of each year regarding any funds recouped or collected for court-appointed attorney fees or expenses of a public defender pursuant to section 331.756, subsection 5, or section 602.8107 during the previous calendar year.

7.  The state public defender shall adopt rules, as necessary, pursuant to chapter 17A to administer this chapter and section 815.9.

Section History: Early form

  [81 Acts, ch 23, § 4, 8]

Section History: Recent form

  85 Acts, ch 36, §1; 88 Acts, ch 1161, § 4; 89 Acts, ch 51, § 1; 91 Acts, ch 268, §411, 439; 92 Acts, ch 1242, § 18; 93 Acts, ch 175, §15; 94 Acts, ch 1107, §20; 94 Acts, ch 1187, §17; 96 Acts, ch 1040, § 2

Internal References

  Referred to in § 815.7, 815.10


  Intent that state public defender provide for defense of major felony case defendants by public defenders on regional basis; 91 Acts, ch 268, § 440

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