Georgia Legislature establishes right to independent counsel for children in deprivation cases
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).
01/01/2013, Legislation, Abuse/Neglect/Dependency - Children
Previously, children only had a right to counsel if they were "not represented" by their parents' counsel. However, Ga. Code Ann. § 15-11-103 was amended in 2013, and now states:
A child and any other party to a proceeding under this article shall have the right to an attorney at all stages of the proceedings under this article ... The court shall appoint an attorney for an alleged dependent child. The appointment shall be made as soon as practicable to ensure adequate representation of such child and, in any event, before the first court hearing that may substantially affect the interests of such child ...A child's attorney owes to his or her client the duties imposed by the law of this state in an attorney-client relationship ... If an attorney has been appointed to represent a child in a prior proceeding under this chapter, the court, when possible, shall appoint the same attorney to represent such child in any subsequent proceeding ... An attorney appointed to represent a child in a dependency proceeding shall continue the representation in any subsequent appeals unless excused by the court.
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