US District Court • Southern District of New York

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Pursuant to the Criminal Justice Act (18 U.S.C. § 3006A)


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Notice To Court-Appointed Counsel Of Public Disclosure of Attorney Fee Information

The Criminal Justice Act (CJA), 18 U.S.C. § 3006A, was amended in 1998 to require that the amounts paid to court-appointed attorneys be made publicly available upon the court’s approval of the payments. Although the amended paragraph of the statute, § 3006A(d)(4), expired after two years and thus only applies to cases commenced between January 25, 1998, and January 24, 2000, the corresponding guideline (paragraph 5.01 of the Guidelines for the Administration of the Criminal Justice Act and Related Statutes, Volume VII, Guide to Judiciary Policies and Procedures) continues as a matter of Judicial Conference policy. The court may disclose an unredacted copy of a payment voucher submitted by defense counsel, or a redacted copy of a voucher indicating only the amounts approved for payment according to categories of services listed in the statute. The extent of disclosure depends on whether the case is pending and on whether the court determines that certain interests (listed below in part B.1) require the redaction of detailed information on the voucher. Upon court approval of a voucher claim, payment information will be made available as follows

A. BEFORE OR DURING THE TRIAL: After redacting any detailed information provided to justify the expenses, the court shall make available to the public only the amounts approved for payment. Upon the completion of trial, unredacted copies of the vouchers may be released, depending on whether an appeal is being pursued and whether the court determines that one or more of the interests listed in part B.1 require the redaction of information.

B. AFTER THE TRIAL IS COMPLETED: The court shall make available to the public either redacted or unredacted vouchers as follows:

    1. If trial court proceedings have been completed and appellate review is not being pursued or has concluded at the time payment is approved: The court shall make an unredacted copy of the payment voucher available to the public unless it determines that one or more of the interests listed below justify limiting disclosure to the amounts approved for payment in the manner described in part A.The interests that may require limiting disclosure include:

      (1) the protection of any person’s 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination;
      (2) the protection of the defendant’s 6th Amendment right to effective assistance of counsel;
      (3) the defendant’s attorney-client privilege;
      (4) the work product privilege of the defendant’s counsel;
      (5) the safety of any person; and
      (6) any other interest that justice may require (with the exception that for death penalty cases where the underlying alleged criminal conduct took place on or after April 19, 1995, the amount of the fees shall not be considered a reason justifying any limited disclosure

    2. If appellate review is being pursued at the time payment is approved: The court shall make available to the public only the amounts approved for payment in the manner described in part A unless it finds that none of the interests listed above in part B.1 will be compromised.

C. AFTER THE APPEAL IS COMPLETED: The court shall make an unredacted copy of the payment voucher available to the public unless it determines that one or more of the interests listed in B.1 justify limiting disclosure to the amounts approved for payment in the manner described in part A.

If counsel believes that any of the interests listed above in part B.1 justify limiting disclosure to the amounts approved for payment, counsel should submit to the court a written request, identifying the interests at risk and the arguments in support of providing protection, AT OR BEFORE THE TIME A CLAIM FOR PAYMENT IS MADE. Failure to do so could result in the public availability of unredacted copies of your vouchers without further notice.

This constitutes notice under CJA Guideline 5.01. You may NOT receive additional notice before any payment information is made available to the public.