Upon a showing by the person that DNA testing may be relevant to the person’s claim of wrongful conviction, the court shall appoint counsel for an indigent person as follows:

Terms Used In Nebraska Statutes 29-4122

  • Appeal: A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly. To make such a request is "to appeal" or "to take an appeal." One who appeals is called the appellant.
  • Attorney: shall mean attorney at law. See Nebraska Statutes 49-801
  • Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
  • Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
  • Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
  • Person: shall include bodies politic and corporate, societies, communities, the public generally, individuals, partnerships, limited liability companies, joint-stock companies, and associations. See Nebraska Statutes 49-801
  • Public defender: Represent defendants who can't afford an attorney in criminal matters.
  • State: when applied to different states of the United States shall be construed to extend to and include the District of Columbia and the several territories organized by Congress. See Nebraska Statutes 49-801

(1) The court shall first contact the chief counsel for the Commission on Public Advocacy to inquire if the commission is able to accept the appointment. If the chief counsel determines that the commission can accept the appointment, then the court shall appoint the commission pursuant to the County Revenue Assistance Act; and

(2) If the chief counsel declines the appointment because of a conflict of interest or the case would exceed the caseload standards set by the commission, then the court shall appoint an attorney licensed to practice law in this state with at least five years experience in felony litigation to represent the indigent person at all stages of the proceedings. Counsel appointed under this subdivision, other than the public defender, shall obtain leave of court before proceeding beyond an initial direct appeal to either the Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court to any further direct, collateral, or postconviction appeals to state or federal courts. Counsel appointed under this subdivision shall file an application for fees and expenses in the district court which appointed him or her for all fees and expenses reasonably necessary to permit him or her to effectively and competently represent the client. The court, upon hearing the application, shall fix reasonable attorney’s fees and expenses. The court’s order shall require that such fees and expenses be paid by the Commission on Public Advocacy from funds appropriated by the Legislature. Upon receipt of the order, the commission shall pay such fees and expenses in the full amount determined by the court.