As I was looking for something else, I stumbled across this brand-new law review article by Benjamin Barton & Stephanos Bibas. See here. It has a lot to say about so-called “civil Gideon” and about the Court’s ruling in Turner v. Rogers. It’s not much of a secret that I wrote extensively on Turner v. Rogers since the day Supreme Court agreed to hear the case. Nor is it much of a secret that one of these two authors was one of the attorneys litigating that case. So, don’t expect an especially balanced critique of the opinion. I haven’t had a chance to read the article yet but from what I can see it’s at least worth reading. You might agree with it; you might not. From what little I’ve skimmed, the logic is certainly the most defensible argument against appointing attorneys outside of the criminal defense context.
I personally disagree that Turner v. Rogers was rightly decided but that’s because I think Turner presented a clear instance where the defendant faced incarceration and that the Court’s precedents have always suggested that defendants facing incarceration have a right to counsel…period. Lassiter made that inescapable. Well, almost inescapable. The Justices seemed to have missed it.
At any rate, give the article a read! It’s free on UPenn Law Review’s site for now.