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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

Northern District of Texas

Barbara M.G. Lynn, Chief Judge
Karen Mitchell, Clerk of Court

Increases to the Hourly Rate and Case Compensation Maximums Under the Criminal Justice Act (CJA)

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Rates for Counsel

The hourly rates for CJA appointed counsel have been increased from $155 (previously $152) for non-capital work and $197 (previously $195) for capital work. The new rate applies to services performed on or after January 1, 2021. Where appointment of counsel occurred before January 1, 2021, the new hourly compensation rate applies to that portion of services provided on or after the effective date.

CJA Panel Attorney Case Compensation Maximums (in Non-Capital Cases)

Because of the increase in the non-capital hourly rate, the waivable case compensation maximum amounts for non-capital representations increase to:

Felony: $12,100 (previously $11,800) 
Appeal: $8,600 (previously $8,400)
Misdemeanors: $3,400 (unchanged)
Other (e.g., supervised release, material witness): $2,600 (previously $2,500)

The compensation thresholds that trigger Fifth Circuit review in capital trials and habeas cases ($100,000/$35,000) have not changed.

Rates for Service Providers

The case compensation maximum for investigative, expert, or other services without prior authorization remains $900. This limitation applies to the total aggregate compensation, excluding expenses, for all services combined. 

The waivable case compensation maximum with prior authorization in non-capital cases is $2,700 (up from $2,600) for each individual service provider. 

The waivable case maximum with prior authorization in capital representations remains $7,500 for all services combined. See 18 U.S.C. § 3599(g)(2). 

Effective Date

The new case compensation maximums apply to a voucher submitted by appointed counsel if that person furnished any CJA-compensable work on or after January 1, 2021. The former case compensation maximums apply to a voucher submitted by appointed counsel if that person’s CJA-compensable work on the representation was completed before January 1, 2021.