Monday, March 1, 2010

If the Lawyer Fails

Our legal system is complex and a lot more powerful than any individual. That is why the Constitution guarantees people accused of serious crimes the right to counsel. If a lawyer turns out to be negligent, the system must do all it can to protect the individual’s rights.


This case should be easy to decide. The original lawyer failed to meet the deadline for filing a petition on behalf of the client, who had taken reasonable steps to make sure that deadlines were being met. The 11th Circuit now says too bad that the client had a bad lawyer - case closed.

Courts have increasing become reliant on the tenets of Packer's Crime Control Model, which emphasizes speed and efficiency while sacrificing distributive justice. It is now up to the U.S. Supreme Court to stop the fall out from bad lawyering.  I am not optimistic.

No comments: