Chief Justice Warren Burger has been complaining for over a decade that "from one-third to one-half of the lawyers who appear in the serious cases are not really qualified to render fully adequate representation." We may quibble about his statistics, but we cannot deny the substance of the Chief Justice's complaint. There is a significant amount of ineffective assistance of counsel, and that situation is intolerable, both professionally and constitutionally. Under Canon 6 of the Code of Professional Responsibility, "A lawyer should represent a client competently," and under the sixth amendment, criminal defendants are entitled to the effective assistance of counsel.
Monroe H. Freedman,
Competency of Counsel and Judicial Responsibilty, 4 Litigation 45 (1977-1978)
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