February 26, 2010
Capital Case Representation Rule Adopted
The Supreme Court of Ohio has amended the rules concerning appointment of counsel for indigent defendants in capital cases. The new amendments take effect March 1, Justices concurring 7-0.
The amendments to Sup. R. 20 clarify the amount of specialized training needed to serve as lead or co-counsel or appellate counsel in these cases. The amendments also push back the date (from July 1 to Dec. 31) when the Rule 20 Committee revokes certification for attorneys who are out of compliance with specialized training requirements for the prior two-year period.
In addition, the amendments give the committee the ability to adopt best practices for representing indigent death penalty defendants and mandate that continuing education for certified attorneys must include the best practices adopted by the committee.