header-sample

Frequently Asked Questions

If I am a new attorney, how do I find out when to check in for my assignment and what procedures to follow after I receive my assignments?

An Attorney Information Packet will be mailed to you when Assigned Counsel Services (ACS) has been notified that you were placed on the eligibility list.  It will give information such as when to return your assignment notices, when and where to check-in for your a.m. and p.m. assignments, how to cancel an assignment, what forms to complete that must be forwarded to the Office of Budget & Finance to ensure proper payment, and other pertinent information.

If I am assigned to a case in the courtroom and I am scheduled as EHC/HC, what form must I complete and where should it be delivered?

You must complete a Request for Emergency House Counsel To Be Assigned To Case Form (MJC 954), which must be signed by the jurist.  Afterwards, the form must be submitted to Assigned Counsel Services (ACS) for processing.

If I move to a new location, change my mailing or email address, or change my telephone number, how should I inform ACS?

You must complete and sign a Notice of Attorney Information Form (MJC203) and return it to ACS. Click the link: Notice of Attorney Information (MJC203)

How are EHC/HC assignments processed?

EHC/HC assignment notices are randomly generated via our attorney draw computer system on a monthly basis. If you receive an assignment from the draw, you will have seven (7) days to indicate if you accept or reject the assignment; the letters must be returned to ACS for processing.

When must I complete a voucher?

Attorneys are required to voucher on-line for all hearings with the exception of appellate assignments until further notice. A voucher (form MJC-910) must be submitted to the Office of Budget & Finance to request a payment for appeals.

How do I voucher for a motion hearing?

You must prepare and submit a motion/petition to the Office of Budget & Finance with a completed voucher (form MJC-910), and the signature of the jurist must appear in order to request payment for extraordinary fees. Once it is approved, the request will be forwarded to the Office of Budget & Finance for payment. The voucher may be submitted to the Presiding Judge at the LHJ.

How do I become eligible to receive assignments?

You must first complete and submit an Attorney Profile/Application, be a member in good standing with the Michigan State Bar, and have a valid email address.  An e-mail address is a mandatory requirement in order to receive assignments; House Counsel/Emergency House Counsel notices are sent via email.  Also, a judicial Attorney Review Committee reviews and approves all attorney profile/applications.  Once you are approved, you will be added to the attorney eligibility list to receive assignments.

Where must I check in for my House Counsel/Emergency House Counsel assignment?

You must check in at the Office of Assigned Counsel Services, which is located in building B, room 104. The check-in times are shown below:

Check-in

Morning (a.m.)
EHC/HC check-in at LHJ – 8:30 a.m.

Afternoon (p.m.)
EHC/HC check-in at LHJ – 12:30 p.m.

Weekend/Holiday check-in at JDF
HC check-in at JDF – 9:45 a.m.
Report directly to JDF (Juvenile Detention Facility) for your assignment. Call Assigned Counsel Services at (313) 833-5565 when you arrive for your assignment.

How will I be notified of my assignment on a case and/or subsequent hearing dates?

Notification may be given to you by one of the following methods:
  1. The courtroom employees will verbally notify you.
  2. You may be notified via telephone by court personnel, judicial administrative assistant, or the County Clerk staff assigned to the courtrooms.

What must I do if I am unable to serve as HC/EHC on my scheduled assignment date?

Notify Assigned Counsel Services immediately.

An attorney will be coded as cancelled if he/she notifies the Office of Assigned Counsel Services (ACS) within 24 hours of the assignment date.  Cancellation outside this time-frame will be coded as a no-show.

Per the Court’s policy, an attorney will be coded as a no-show if he/she fails to appear for HC/EHC duty.

What should I do if I am the attorney of record and unable to attend a hearing?

You must notify the courtroom where the case will be heard.  You may have a substitute attorney appear in your absence.  However, a Jurist may remove you and assign an EHC to the case.  The Court will not pay the substitute counsel.  You are responsible for compensating the substitute counsel.

How can I be removed as assigned counsel on a case?

Your removal may be due to the following:
  1. As assigned counsel, you failed to appear or send an eligible substitute or arrived late for a hearing.
  2. Legal party is deceased, has released parental rights, or has had parental rights terminated by the Court.
  3. Legal party has requested your removal and communication has clearly deteriorated to such an extent that the Jurist has determined that counsel is unable to provide adequate representation.
  4. Assigned Counsel requests to withdraw, client does not object, and the Jurist has determined that the case will not be unduly delayed.
  5. Retained Counsel has replaced you as legal counsel on the case.
  6. The client has not appeared for two (2) or more hearings.
  7. Father is putative/alleged.

Can I represent a putative or alleged father?

No, this is not in compliance with the Assigned Counsel Services Policy.  The party must establish/acknowledge paternity before counsel can be appointed.

What must I do if I have to withdraw as counsel on cases that I’ve been assigned to?

If you’ve been assigned to one case, contact the Jurist affiliated with the case.  If you were assigned to multiple cases, notify the Court in writing.  List all of the cases you are assigned to and submit them to the Assigned Counsel Services Office.

What must I do if the Attorney Discipline Board suspends me from law practice or I terminate my practice?

You are required to notify the Court, in writing, of the disciplinary action taken by the Attorney Discipline Board or if you terminate your practice.