Official Government Website

Indigent Defense Providers and Defending Attorneys

The PDC has been given the authority to create Indigent Defense Standards with which the defending attorneys must comply. These standards will be created by rule through the negotiated rulemaking process. For more information, navigate to the following pages:

Standards and Guidelines

Negotiated Rulemaking

Proposed and Pending Rules


This document can assist you to understand what standards are current and require compliance. This document is only a guide. The PDC recommends reviewing the IDAPA rules in full to ensure compliance.

Pursuant to Idaho Code 19-850, the State Public Defense Commission has been charged with establishing training and continuing legal education requirements with regard to the following types of cases: criminal, juvenile, abuse and neglect, post-conviction, civil commitment, capital, and civil contempt. As part of that mission, the Commission offers Defending Attorneys training and continuing legal education opportunities to those who qualify. State statute defines a "defending attorney" as "any attorney employed by the office of public defender, contracted by the county or otherwise assigned to represent adults or juveniles at public expense." (I.C. 19-851(1).) The State Public Defense Commission makes an attempt to maintain a current roster of all institutional, contract and conflict public defenders throughout the state. If you are not on our mailing list and currently work for a county public defender agency, work under a contract with a County Board of Commissioners, or frequently take indigent appointments, please contact us directly.

IDAPA 61.01.01 - Training Rule

Pursuant to Idaho Code 19-850(2)(d), the PDC may provide training and continuing legal education for indigent defense services. The legislature has appropriated training funds to the PDC. These rules create the procedures by which the PDC will use these funds and provide training to defending attorneys and their staff. Click here for training rules that went into effect on July 1, 2016.

IDAPA 61.01.07 - Standards for Defending Attorneys

Idaho's Defending Attorneys are required to maintain their Idaho State Bar license and complete Continuing Legal Education requirements. For the current rules, navigate to Rules (Standards) page. In summary, defending attorneys shall complete 7 hours of CLE's annually that are relevant to the representation of indigent defendants or other individuals who are entitled to be represented by an attorney at public expense. Additionally, for those attorneys who handle cases requiring specialized knowledge, 3 CLE's within 2 years of handling such cases is required that are pertinent to the specialized area. The PDC is currently proposing training and education requirements for those attorneys who handle capital cases. To review the proposed rule, navigate to the Proposed and Pending Rules page.

upcoming conferences

The Public Defense Commission is pleased to announce that we have once again partnered with IACDL to bring you the 2019 IACDL SUN VALLEY SEMINAR April 12 - 13, 2019.

This is a highly attended event by public defenders across the state.  We hope that you will make a note of the date and begin adjusting your calendar so that you wont miss it.  Additional information on the seminar and registration details will be provided at the beginning of the year.


Scholarship Application: The rules allow the PDC to approve the attendance of attorneys or other staff to attend conferences that are not sponsored by the PDC. Please read the rules, then download the appropriate application for a scholarship.

Application for Scholarship Funding - use this form to apply for non-PDC sponsored training programs

Application for Scholarship PDC Program - use this form if you are non-attorney staff and would like to attend a PDC sponsored training program

Submit the application via email or fax to the PDC.


To receive CLE credit for watching these recordings, defending attorneys must submit an MCLE accreditation application through the Idaho State Bar.

The Public Defense Commission plans on offering MCLE credit through archived webinars hosted by the National Association for Public Defense (NAPD) at their MyGideon site. Those webinars are only available to dues-paying members. If you are interested in joining NAPD, the Public Defense Commission conducts a membership drive twice each year and will cover your dues. Please contact us for more information regarding NAPD membership.

For access to the archived webinars, visit My Gideon.

Attorneys can download a simple “blackletter” version of relevant state statutes or applicable court rules by clicking on the links below. (The .pdf versions are bookmarked for ease of use.)


(1) Idaho Criminal Rules (Supreme Court)(2015)

Word version         .pdf version

(2) Idaho Misdemeanor Criminal Rules (Supreme Court)(2015)

Word version         .pdf version

(3) Idaho Rules of Criminal Procedure (Title 19)(2015)*

Word version         .pdf version


(1) Idaho Rules of Evidence (Supreme Court)(2015)

Word version         .pdf version

(2) Idaho Rules of Evidence (Title 9)(2015)

Word version         .pdf version


(1) Idaho Criminal Code (Title 18, 20, & 37)(2015)

Word version         .pdf version

* Note that where conflicts exist in matters of procedure between a statutory provision and the Idaho Criminal Rules adopted by the Supreme Court, the court rules prevail. See State v. Currington, 108 Idaho 539, 541 (1985).

Attorneys handling capital cases at public expense must meet the qualifications in Standards for Defending Attorneys edition 2017.

Pursuant to Idaho Code 19-850, the PDC has the responsibility of determining the qualifications of defending attorneys assigned to capital cases. Those attorneys on the Idaho Supreme Court Idaho Capital Defense Roster as of May 1, 2018 are eligible for inclusion on the PDC Capital Counsel Roster at the same level at which they are currently listed. Attorneys must demonstrate they are actively handling criminal defense cases of some complexity and show proof of attendance at the required level of capital training as approved by the PDC within the last two (2) years for the level of service they will be providing. Such application must be made on or before November 1, 2018. Upon the expiration of the term of eligibility, grandfathered attorneys must show compliance with the requirements of these standards, Indigent Defense Standards, and all applicable professional and ethical responsibility standards. A defending attorney who fails to meet these standards at that time, will be removed from the Capital Counsel Roster.

For current members of the ISC Capital Defense Roster - To apply for inclusion on the PDC Roster, provide the required information listed above in an e-mail to Kelly Jennings.

For attorneys who are not on the ISC Capital Defense Roster - To apply for inclusion on the PDC Roster, complete the Capital Defense Roster Application and send to the PDC, ATTN: Kelly Jennings.


Idaho Code 19-864 requires all defending attorneys to submit an annual report by November 1 of each year to the board of county commissioners, the corresponding administrative district judge and the PDC. The PDC has created and approved the following form for annual reporting for FY2018:

Annual Reporting Form - Contract Defending Attorneys

Annual Reporting Form - Institutional Offices

Annual Reporting Form - Initial Appearance Attorneys Only

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