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Tue Oct 30, 2012, 05:48 AM

Law governing legal fees unconstitutional, Miami-Dade judge says

Source: Miami Herald

Posted on Monday, 10.29.12
Law governing legal fees unconstitutional, Miami-Dade judge says

The controversial law tied funding for poor clients to the budgets of judges themselves.


A Miami-Dade judge says a law tying legal bills for defending death penalty defendants to annual budgets of state judges is unconstitutional. Circuit Judge Victoria Sigler said the law violates Florida’s constitution, which guarantees a separation of power between the judiciary and lawmakers — who are supposed to be the ones who allocate money for indigent clients.

The reason: Every year, the state sets up a pool of money to pay lawyers’ bills in death penalty and racketeering cases. Before this year, the Legislature always appropriated more money to cover overruns.

But lawmakers, looking to contain rising costs of legal fees in death penalty and racketeering fees to private attorneys, quietly passed Senate Bill 1960. The bill, passed in March, mandated that any overruns come from the courts budgets.

The law “makes judges think twice about paying a lawyer, knowing that he or she has to also think about paying his secretary or buying copier paper,” Markus said.

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/10/29/3073244/law-governing-legal-fees-unconstitutional.html#storylink=cpy

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Reply Law governing legal fees unconstitutional, Miami-Dade judge says (Original post)
Judi Lynn Oct 2012 OP
merrily Oct 2012 #1

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Tue Oct 30, 2012, 07:32 AM

1. Part of the RW "poor people do not deserve constitutional rights" initiative.

I thought I read somewhere that Limbaugh said poor people should not be able to vote.

Try to raise taxes, even a tiny bit, though, and Morning Joe starts whining about class warfare.

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