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This entry was published on 2014-09-22
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SECTION 717
Public defender; duties
County (CNT) CHAPTER 11, ARTICLE 18-A
§ 717. Public defender; duties. 1. The public defender shall
represent, without charge, at the request of the defendant, or by order
of the court with the consent of the defendant, each indigent defendant
who is charged with a crime as defined in section seven hundred
twenty-two-a of the county law in the county or counties in which such
public defender serves. When representing an indigent defendant, the
public defender shall counsel and represent him at every stage of the
proceedings following arrest, shall initiate such proceedings as in his
judgment are necessary to protect the rights of the accused, and may, in
his discretion, prosecute any appeal, if in his judgment the facts and
circumstances warrant such appeal.

2. The public defender shall also represent, without charge, in a
proceeding in family court or surrogate's court in the county or
counties where such public defender serves, any person entitled to
counsel pursuant to section two hundred sixty-two and section eleven
hundred twenty of the family court act and section four hundred seven of
the surrogate's court procedure act, or any person entitled to counsel
pursuant to article six-C of the correction law, who is financially
unable to obtain counsel. When representing such person, the public
defender shall counsel and represent him at every stage of the
proceedings, shall initiate such proceedings as in the judgment of the
public defender are necessary to protect the rights of such person, and
may prosecute any appeal when, in his judgment the facts and
circumstances warrant such appeal.