About the Criminal Justice Act (CJA)

In 1964, the Criminal Justice Act (CJA), 18 U.S.C. § 3006A, established a comprehensive system for appointing counsel to represent any person financially unable to obtain adequate representation in a serious federal criminal prosecution.  At or shortly after a indigent defendant's initial court appearance in district court, either a Federal Public (or Community) Defender’s (FPD) office, or a lawyer from a court’s CJA attorney panel, may be appointed.

So long as the person remains indigent, the appointment of that attorney continues on appeal unless the lawyer is granted permission by the court to withdraw.  In that instance, another FPD office or a member of the Tenth Circuit’s appellate CJA attorney panel will be appointed to handle the appeal.

Each federal court has a CJA Plan.  The CJA Plan for the United States Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals may be reviewed by clicking on the Policies and Procedures link below:

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Payment for Services and Expenses

Becoming a Tenth Circuit Appellate Panel Attorney

Compensation Rates and Case Maximums

Case Budgeting and Requests for Services

Tenth Circuit and National CJA Policies and Procedures

Tenth Circuit CJA Contacts






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