Supreme Court says lawyers must do competent job handling plea bargains. “Isn’t that obvious?” asks every competent defense attorney.

March 21, 2012

These law books are no substitute for zealous advocacy.

Supreme Court says lawyers must do competent job handling plea bargains. “Isn’t that obvious?” asks every competent defense attorney.

I am at once astounded and disgusted that this issue even had to go to SCOTUS.

“The decisions laid out by Kennedy means that criminal defense lawyers are now required to inform their clients of plea bargain offers, regardless of whether they think the client should accept them, and must give their clients good advice on whether to accept a plea bargain at all stages of prosecution. If they don’t, Kennedy said, they will run afoul of the Sixth Amendment right to assistance of counsel during criminal proceedings. ‘The right to counsel is the right to effective assistance of counsel,’ Kennedy said.”

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