Right to counsel

Key_development Question_mark

Legislation, Truancy - Petition Against Child

Pursuant to D.C. Code 16-2301(8)(A)(ii), habitual truancy is treated as a neglect matter.  And D.C. Code § 16-2304(b)(5) specifies that children are entitled to the appointment of an attorney guardian ad litem, regardless of indigence.  The GAL's role is to represent the child's best interests. 

Under SCR Neglect and Abuse Rule 42, the court has the ability to appoint a separate attorney as well. SCR Neglect and Abuse Rule 42 ("An attorney shall be appointed to serve as guardian ad litem for a child or children alleged to be neglected and the Court may, in addition, appoint an attorney to represent such child or children.").

Appointment of Counsel: categorical Qualified: yes