Right to counsel
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).
Litigation, Termination of Parental Rights (Private) - Birth Parents
In Matter of K.L.J., the Alaska Supreme Court held that indigent parents have a right to counsel under the Alaska Constitution whenever someone seeks to bypass their consent to adoption under Alaska Stat. § 25.23.050(a). 813 P.2d 276, 278 (Alaska 1991).
In reaching its conclusion, the Court applied the balancing test from Mathews v. Eldridge, 424 U.S. 319, 335 (1976) to determine what process was due. Matter of K.L.J., 813 P.2d at 279. The Court reasoned: “The private interest of a parent whose parental rights may be terminated via an adoption petition is of the highest magnitude.” Id. at 279. It also found sufficient state involvement required to invoke due process, Id. at 283. And that “due process requires that” an “indigent natural parent be appointed an attorney to assist him in demonstrating why his consent to the adoption of his child should not be rendered unnecessary.” Id. at 286.
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: no