OCCAOnline Rules of the Court of Criminal Appeals

(Updated 5/21/2003 in accordance with 2003 OK CR 9)


Rule 1.14 Qualification Rule for Determination of Indigency; Notification; Trial Counsel Responsibility

A. Qualifications.

(1) The qualifications for a defendant to have court-appointed counsel and/or a transcript at State expense in a criminal trial or on direct appeal shall be the same as set forth in Cleek v. State, 748 P.2d 39, 40 (Okl.Cr.1987); Petition of Humphrey, 601 P.2d 103, 108 (Okl.Cr.1979); Bruner v. State, 581 P.2d 1314, 1317 (Okl.Cr.1978). Those guidelines include, but are not limited to: ability of the defendant to make an appeal bond, and his decision to do so; availability and convertibility of any personal and/or real property owned; outstanding debts and liabilities; past and present financial history, earning capacity and living expenses; the accused's credit standing in the community; and the number in the defendant's family and dependents and their history of willingness and ability to assist the defendant with attorney fees and litigation expenses. When a defendant makes a request for court-appointed counsel or a transcript at State expense, a Pauper's Affidavit shall be completed and signed under oath. The initial determination of indigency shall be made by the Chief Judge of the Judicial District or any designee thereof, and shall be made based on the defendant's application and the criteria provided in these Rules.

(2) A status of indigency being ever subject to change, the determination of indigency shall be continually subject to review by the Presiding Judge of the Judicial Administrative District or his/her designee as established by an administrative order. See Section 1355 A (B)(1)(2) of Title 22.

(3) Before the court appoints an attorney or grants any relief available under this Section based on the application set forth in Subsection (4) of this Section, the court shall ensure the application is in the form prescribed in Subsection (4) and the person or, if applicable, his parent or a legal guardian, understands the application is signed under oath and under the penalty of perjury and that a false statement may be prosecuted as such. The Court hearing the application may direct a copy of the application be sent to the prosecuting attorney or the office of the Attorney General, whichever is appropriate, for review; and upon request, the court shall hold a hearing on the issue of eligibility for appointment of the attorney or preparation of transcript at State expense. See Section 1355 A (C) of Title 22.

(4) Pursuant to Section 55 of Title 20, the completed form shall be filed of record and be in compliance with the form set out in Section XIII, Form 13.3.

B. Payment of Costs of Representation. The court may order any person represented by a trial indigent defender, a county indigent defender, any member of the Oklahoma Indigent Defense System, or a defense attorney who contracts or volunteers to represent indigents pursuant to Sections 1355-1355.14 of Title 22 to pay the costs for representation in full or in installments pursuant to the procedure set forth in Section 1355.14 of Title 22, after a judicial determination that the person is financially able to pay such costs. The trial court shall enter an order for the payment of cost of representation and determine eligibility of right to appointed counsel on appeal at the time of entering the Judgment and Sentence.

C. Notification. In all cases the uniform Notice of Intent to Appeal form adopted by this Subsection shall be utilized. If the court appoints an appellate indigent defender in Tulsa or Oklahoma Counties, or the Oklahoma Indigent Defense System, to represent the defendant on appeal, the clerk of the trial court shall notify the indigent defender of the appointment. PROVIDED HOWEVER, the court shall not order the appointment of an appellate indigent defender or notify the appellate indigent defender until the defendant's trial counsel files the Notice of Intent to Appeal and Designation of Record in a timely manner. In so doing, the court shall use the form set out in Section XIII, Form 13.4. The Executive Director of the Oklahoma Indigent Defense System shall ensure notice is provided to the Judges of the District Court and the clerks of the District Court of the names of the attorneys assigned as chief of the Capital Appeals Division and the General Appeals Division to enable the District Court to comply with the requests for appointment of counsel for indigent defendants on appeal. The initial notice shall be made within thirty (30) days of the effective date of these Rules and at least annually thereafter. PROVIDED HOWEVER, notice shall be given within ten (10) days of any change in personnel in those positions.

D. Trial Counsel Responsibility

(1) The trial attorney in all cases shall be responsible for completing and filing the Notice of Intent to Appeal and Designation of Record required by Rule 1.14(C). If a defendant does not direct the trial attorney to initiate an appeal, the attorney shall prepare and file the form set out in Section XIII, Form 13.5, stating the defendant has been fully advised of his/her appeal rights and does not want to appeal the conviction.

(2) In cases in which the death penalty is imposed and the defendant is indigent for the purposes of appeal, trial counsel shall ensure the appropriate application is presented to the District Court for the appointment of counsel both for direct appeal and application for post-conviction relief. See Form 13.4.


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