New Face of the Criminal Conflict Panel
Originally established in 1984 under the auspices of the CCCBA, the Conflict Program now is an independent organization whose mission is to provide high quality defense representation to indigent Contra Costa County residents when there is a conflict of interest with the Public Defender’s office and the Alternate Defender’s Office. Last year, the program assigned attorneys in over 4,000 cases.
While approximately 75 percent of the cases handled by the Conflict Program are criminal cases (adult and juvenile), panel attorneys also represent parties in probate guardianships and conservatorships, immigration and family law. Panel attorneys also represent witnesses testifying in court who are concerned about self-incrimination.
Oksana Tsykova is the newly-appointed Director of the Conflict Program, taking over upon former director Bill Green’s retirement. She has been a member of the CCCBA and the Conflict panel since 2013. As Director, she ensures participating attorneys comply with program rules and the Rules of Professional Conduct, develops continuing educational programs, administers the annual budget of $5.6 million, and reviews funding requests and billing.
To be a member of the panel, attorneys must maintain offices in Contra Costa and conduct the majority of their business in the county, maintain professional liability insurance, and must be active members of the California State Bar. Attorneys are paid based on the case difficulty, ranging from $89 to $130 per hour for out-of-court time, and $99 to $166 per hour for jury trials and contested hearings. To apply to become a Conflict Program panel attorney, please visit: www.conflictprogram.org, email: [email protected] or call (925) 229-4410.