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Nebraska Legislature Bill LB187

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About LB 187:

"Require appointment of counsel for tenants in eviction proceedings in counties containing a city of the metropolitan class or primary class" - This bill would give the right to your tenants that are being evicted to get an attorney at no cost to fight the eviction.

Public Hearing:

Wednesday, March 8th, 2023 at 1:30pm

Room 1113

What Can You Do?

Please use the following link to SUBMIT COMMENTS ONLINE FOR LB187 and leave your comment for the Judiciary Committee to express your OPPOSITION for LB 187 (see below for link)

*MUST SUBMIT BY TUESDAY, MARCH 7th BY 12:00pm*

Suggested Text:

You can copy and edit the below text.

"LB 187 would appoint a public defender for every single defendant in an eviction proceeding at the county taxpayer expense. Right now every defendant has the right to an attorney at their own expense. There is no Nebraska precedent for one side of a civil proceeding to have their attorney supplied by the taxpayers. This is a bad precedent that may lead to all sorts of other individuals asking for taxpayer funded attorneys in civil proceedings. What makes tenants so special that the taxpayer should pay for their lawyer in a civil matter but not for others? Americans have the expectation of equality under law. How is it equal if one side has a taxpayer funded attorney and the other side doesn’t? I note Senator Cavanaugh did not include any projection in his bill as to the cost of this new program to the already beleaguered Nebraska taxpayer. According to the Princeton Eviction Lab there were 10,300 evictions in Nebraska in 2018. The overwhelming majority of them would be in Douglas and Lancaster counties. According to the Nebraska State Bar Association Report of July 2022 the court appointed attorney hourly rate for 90% of the counties in District, Juvenile and County Court is $95-100/hr. According to attorneys I have asked it would be reasonable to expect a taxpayer supplied court appointed attorney to ask for continuances and submit many other motions designed to delay proceedings all of which add more billable hours to the county taxpayers and extra legal costs for landlords. One would likely expect each eviction to cost the taxpayers a minimum of $500 which would come to a total of $5,150,000 yearly. Since they have a free counsel one would also expect many tenants to ask for an appeal of the eviction which I’ve been told could easily add another 20-40 billable hours for legal research, writing and arguing the case on appeal. Senators this bill is not only unjust it would result in potentially ruinous costs to already overburdened Nebraska taxpayers and I ask you to reject it. Thank you."



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