Right to counsel

Key_development Question_mark

Legislation, Abuse/Neglect/Dependency - Children

Children in dependency and termination of parental rights proceedings are entitled to the services of a guardian ad litem (GAL), Ala Code. § 12-15-304(a), and this GAL must be a licensed attorney. Ala Code. § 12-15-102(10). See also Ala. Code § 26-14-11 ("In every case involving an abused or neglected child which results in a judicial proceeding, an attorney shall be appointed to represent the child in such proceedings. Such attorney will represent the rights, interests, welfare, and well-being of the child, and serve as guardian ad litem for the child.").  The GAL's "primary responsibility shall be to protect the best interests of the child." Ala. Code § 12-15-304(a).

Appointment of Counsel: categorical Qualified: yes