Discretionary appointment of counsel

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Legislation, Termination of Parental Rights (State) - Children

Haw. Rev. Stat. § 587A-17(a) provides that the court may appoint counsel for any "party" in a termination proceeding if it is in the child's best interest, and § 587A-4 defines "party" to include the child.


It should also be noted that attorneys’ fees in child protective proceedings are capped at $3,000 before disposition and $1000 for post-disposition review.  Haw. Rev. Stat. § 571-87(b) (2008).  Capping the compensation at such a low amount significantly reduces the effectiveness of the right to counsel.  Laura K. Abel and Max Rettig, State Statutes Providing for a Right to Counsel in Civil Cases, Clearinghouse Rev. J. Poverty L. & Pol’y. (July-August 2006). 

Appointment of Counsel: discretionary Qualified: no