Case Caption: In re Joseph A. Diruzzo III, Esq.Case Number: S. Ct. Civ. No. 2016-0096Date: 11/12/2018Author: Per CuriamCitation: Summary:

In an attorney's appeal challenging an order of the Superior Court reducing by approximately 50% his voucher for compensation and reimbursement as appointed counsel in a criminal case, all parties have been given the opportunity to brief the issues and this matter is ripe for summary action as provided in V.I.S.CT. I.O.P. 9.4. Supreme Court Rule 210 establishes a comprehensive system for the appointment and payment of counsel in proceedings before both the Supreme Court and the Superior Court, and provides a mechanism for court-appointed attorneys to challenge decisions which reduce their compensation or reimbursement requests in whole or in part. Amended Rule 210.4 expressly provides that if a judge rejects the payment in request in whole or in part, the judge shall state the reasons for doing so in an accompanying order. Because the Superior Court did not state its reasons for reducing the request for compensation and reimbursement in this instance, it is not possible for this Court to meaningfully review its decision, whether through a traditional appeal or pursuant to Rule 210. Therefore, the June 30, 2016 order is summarily vacated and the Superior Court is directed to issue a new decision on this request for compensation and reimbursement, which must comply with all provisions of the Rule 210 as amended, including the requirement that any reduction in compensation or reimbursement be accompanied with an order stating the reasons for the rejection.

Attachment: Open Document or Opinion