Newark becomes third city to enact right to counsel for evictions
While a state may have many statutes, court decisions, or court rules governing appointment of counsel for a particular subject area, a "Key Development" is a statute/decision/rule that prevails over the others (example: a state high court decision finding a categorical right to counsel in guardianships cases takes precedence over a statute saying appointment in guardianship cases is discretionary).
08/11/2018, Legislation, Housing - Evictions
UDPATE: right to counsel bill enacted!
In late December 2018, the Newark City Council enacted an ordinance sponsored by Mayor Ras Baraka that guarantees counsel to tenants under 200% of the federal poverty level who are facing eviction. By enacting this law, Newark joined NYC and San Francisco, which passed such laws within the last year.
UPDATE: initiative takes step forward
NJ dot com reports that Newark passed an ordinance to create a nonprofit to connect eligible tenants with representation, the first step taken since the Mayor announced his intention. However, "The ordinance does not cite funding sources or detail the responsibilities of the nonprofit”, although the article suggests the City will fund the nonprofit at least in part.
In May 2018, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, standing with NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, announced he intends to introduce legislation on Friday that would provide a right to counsel for Newark tenants in housing court. The plan is for the first stage of implementation to occur on Sept 1 (which would apply to roughly 10,000 seniors, people with disabilities, and undocumented immigrants), with the whole effort to be in place within 3-5 years. News stories say the city intends to rely at least initially on pro bono attorneys to carry out the project.
If "yes", the established right to counsel or discretionary appointment of counsel is limited in some way, including any of: the only authority is a lower/intermediate court decision or a city council, not a high court or state legislature; there has been a subsequent case that has cast doubt; a statute is ambiguous; or the right or discretionary appointment is not for all types of individuals or proceedings within that category.
Appointment of Counsel: categorical Qualified: yes