Thursday, July 24, 2014

Lawyers Need to Be GALs for Juveniles

I applaud G. Michael Fenner's position taken on lawyers v. non-lawyers acting as Guardians ad Litem for children in juvenile cases.  I believe that it is absolutely necessary for children to be represented by attorneys in these cases, as to take away this right to counsel for children would leave them the only parties unrepresented in these matters.  Parents have attorneys, the Department of Health and Human Services has attorneys, and the State has County Attorneys.

The right to counsel for children involved in juvenile proceedings should be a no-brainer.  And in fact, many states are moving toward a model with lawyer GALs, rather than away from it.  I would hate to see Nebraska moving in the wrong direction by taking away children's right to counsel in these matters.

Thank you to G. Michael Fenner for taking this position, and summarizing it so succinctly.

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