Page 196 - Ad Hoc Report June 2018
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the country CJA panel attorneys on average used service providers in only 14 to 15 percent of their cases.704 During this same period, utilization of such services in several districts was as low as one percent.705 The highest use was 53 percent for one district in only one fiscal year.706 This compares to federal defenders who told the Committee that they use service providers in all of their cases.
Over the last five years, in what percentage of your cases have you sought permission of the court to engage a service provider (e.g., investigator, paralegal or other expert*) in a non-capital case?
            Less than 5%
5-10% 11-20% 21-30% 31-40% 41-50%
More than 50%
The Committee reviewed data about panel attorneys’ utilization of service providers in non-capital, non-immigration matters. Over the course of the last
three fiscal years, the district with the highest rate of use was the Middle District of Tennessee, where CJA lawyers employed a service provider in just under half of all representations. By contrast, panel attorneys in the Southern District of Alabama employed a service provider in two percent of representations. The Northern District of Mississippi reported the very same two percent rate of usage, and the Southern District of Georgia and the Western District of Arkansas showed similar data.
Within a state, districts vary in usage rates and average payments. In one state, each of three districts had widely varying uses of experts, ranging from a high in one
district of 40 percent to a low of 1 percent in the neighboring district.707
The Committee conducted its own survey of panel attorneys to learn more
about their usage of service providers. The results from those surveys are consistent
704 Id.Datadoesnotincludeserviceprovidersincapitalcases,immigrationcases,orinterpreters. 705 Id.
706 Id.
707 Id.
No recommendation presented herein represents T H E A D H O C C O M M I T T E E T O R E V I E W T H E C R I M I N A L J U S T I C E A C T the policy of the Judicial Conference of the United States unless approved by the Conference itself.
17.27% 11.27%
7.34% 4.42%
10% 20% 30%
40% 50%
*Interpreters/translators are not included in this question.
Source: CJA Review Committee Survey on Use of Service Providers (June 2016), available at
 152 2 0 1 7
Percent of cases in which requests were made

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