Tennessee Bar Association Voices Support for Indigent Representation Reform

TBA President Lucian Pera Applauds Supreme Court for Leading the Effort

The Tennessee Supreme Court announced Oct. 3 that it would support efforts to reform the state's indigent representation methods. Below is the full statement from Tennessee Bar Association President Lucian Pera in response to the announcement:
"The TBA applauds the Supreme Court’s strong leadership on indigent representation reform. We look forward to partnering with the court and others interested in making real improvement on the status quo. 
For too long Tennessee has been at the very bottom of the heap nationally in the way we fund representation of indigent defendants, as well as juveniles caught in the system. The court's recommendations regarding rates and caps is a step in the right direction. Frankly, it is a small step, and it is not enough; but it is a start. 
In appointing the Task Force on Indigent Representation, and now forcefully endorsing its recommendations, the court is leading the way to serious indigent representation reform. Beyond simply raising rates and caps, the court is putting the pieces in place to really improve the system for all Tennesseans.
Tennessee's lawyers care deeply about improving the representation of people in need. Under the Constitution, all Tennesseans have a constitutional right to a lawyer in criminal cases. The TBA looks forward to working shoulder-to-shoulder with the Court to move Tennessee in the right direction."
          | TBA Law Blog

The Tennessee Bar Association (TBA) is the largest professional association in Tennessee with more than 13,000 members. Founded in 1881, the TBA provides opportunities for continuing legal education, professional development and public service. The TBA’s dedication to serving the state’s legal community is evidenced by its membership roll, which represents the entire spectrum of legal practice: plaintiff and defense lawyers, corporate counsel, judges, prosecutors, public defenders, government lawyers and legal services attorneys.

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Katharine Heriges
Tennessee Bar Association
221 4th Avenue N. Suite 400
Nashville, TN 37219

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