Criminal Assignment System: Policies and Procedures
General Operating Rules
- The Criminal Assignment Committee shall oversee the administration of the Criminal Assignment System.
- New applicants must have their primary place of business as listed with the State Bar of Michigan in Oakland County.
- A quorum of the Criminal Assignment Committee is required at meetings for application reviews and category placements, petitions for reclassification, complaints, and requests for category reconsideration. A majority of those members present and voting is required to transact business.
- Minutes and vote totals on categorical placements, petitions for reclassification, complaints, and requests for category reconsideration shall be recorded.
- Initial placements and categorical placements as a result of petitions for reclassification shall be based upon a weighted scoring system, including, but not limited to, such criteria as criminal trial experience, criminal law education, participation in the Oakland County Mentor program, second chair experience, and other relevant information as determined by the Criminal Assignment Committee in accordance with the authority granted it by Local Administrative Order.
- Notification of Criminal Assignment Committee decisions on category placements, petitions for reclassification, complaints, and requests for reconsideration shall be made by the Court Administrator's Office.
- All petitions and complaints, including records of disposition of such items by the Criminal Assignment Committee, will be kept on file in the Court Administrator's Office.
- Copies of these policies and procedures and the applicant's personal file shall be available upon request at the Court Administrator's Office.
- Attorneys requesting temporary inactive status or removal from the indigent defense roster shall do so in writing, addressed to the Criminal Assignment Committee, and filed with the Court Administrator.
Application Review Process
- Applications are available in the Court Administrator's Office upon request and the Circuit Court website. Completed applications may be filed with the Court Administrator's Office at any time during the year.
- Applications shall be reviewed at least twice annually. Additional meetings may be called at the discretion of the Chairperson.
Reclassification Review Process
- A Petition for Reclassification form will be available in the Court Administrator's Office and on the Circuit Court website for those attorneys who wish to apply for reclassification. A completed petition may be filed with the Court Administrator's Office at any time during the year. The Committee will review petitions at least twice annually. Additional meetings may be called at the discretion of the Chairperson.
Complaint Review Process
- A. A complaint must be in writing (memo or email) and submitted to the Court Administrator.
Complaints may include, but not be limited to, false representations in the application, misrepresentations in court, chronic refusals to take appointments, failure to attend court dates, chronic tardiness, substance abuse, inadequate representation, disruptive or disrespectful courtroom behavior, and notice of disciplinary action taken by the State Bar.
- B. The Court Administrator will immediately notify the Chair of the Criminal Assignment Committee and provide him/her with a copy of the complaint.
- C. Upon receipt of the complaint, the Chair of the Criminal Assignment Committee will review the complaint and determine if it should be dismissed or submitted to the Committee for review. The Chair may immediately suspend the named attorney from receiving appointments if, in the Chair's discretion, such action is warranted.
- D. Complaint is dismissed.
- i. The Court Administrator will notify the person who submitted the complaint and the named attorney that the complaint was dismissed, and
- ii. For informational purposes, the chair will inform the Criminal Assignment Committee of the complaint by email or at its next regularly scheduled meeting.
- E. Complaint is submitted to the Committee for review.
Within 14 days of the receipt of the complaint:
- i. The Chair or Court Administrator will notify the members of the complaint,
- ii. The Chair will schedule a Criminal Assignment Committee meeting not more than 30 days after receipt of the complaint, and
- iii. The Court Administrator will notify the named attorney of the complaint and invite him/her to submit a written response. The Court Administrator may impose a reasonable deadline as to when the response is due.
- F. The Court Administrator will distribute the named attorney's written response, if any, to the committee members in advance of the Criminal Assignment Committee meeting at which the complaint will be reviewed.
- G. The committee will dispose of the complaint by majority vote.
- H. The Court Administrator will notify the person who submitted the complaint and the named attorney of the action taken by the Committee.
 The named attorney may be invited by the Chair, or upon the written request of at least four members, to meet with the committee at the time the complaint is being reviewed for the purpose of providing more information about the complaint or to answer questions presented by the members.
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