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CJA Panel Information

CJA Panel Information

The TXW eVoucher Welcome Presentation - The Basics video has arrived! (Click on the link to go to the United States Court-Western District of Texas website to view the video)

The new eVoucher (Single Profile) video is also available on the United States Court - Western District of Texas.  (Click on the link to view video) 

The Criminal Justice Act (CJA) Panel for the Western District of Texas consists of private attorneys who accept appointed cases from the Magistrate or District Judges. CJA counsel are reimbursed for their representation by the United States District Court, according to rates set by Congress. Funds for investigators, experts, and other defense-related staff are also reimbursed by the Court. Click here for current CJA rates. 


Amended CJA Plan, Western District of Texas (2018) was approved on July 24, 2018. 
Applications and further information are available for each Division:
San Antonio CJA Panel Questionnaire and Application, Revised May 8, 2012
El Paso CJA Panel Questionnaire and Application, Revised February 7, 2006
Del Rio CJA Panel Questionnaire and Application, Revised August 27, 2013
Midland/Odessa & Pecos CJA Panel Questionnaire and Appliction, Revised May 3, 2010
Waco CJA Panel Questionnaire and Application, Revised August 12, 2009
To ensure you are receiving the current version of the Application for each Division, please click here to access the website for the Western District of Texas

NOTE: If you have questions about panel membership, please contact Cynthia Orr, the Western District of Texas CJA Panel Representative, at 210- 226-1463. 

CJA Panel Resources

Click to open/close resources

There are CJA Panel Committees in Austin, El Paso, and San Antonio.  Final Order Adopting Criminal Justice Act Plan for Austin was signed on June 7, 2019.  Order Regarding Establishment of the Austin Division CJA Committe was singed on July 18, 2019.

Office of Defender Services Training Branch

The Office of Defender Services Training Branch in Washington, D.C. provides support to panel attorneys in CJA cases. The Branch has special expertise in federal criminal law and procedure, including guideline sentencing. The hotline telephone number is 800-788-9908. The branch website includes a page for panel attorneys, which offers CJA forms and instructions, current CJA rates, an overview of procedures pertaining to appointment under the CJA, and other information. This website also includes Volume VII of the Guide to Judiciary Polices and Procedures. The Guide provides guidelines for the administration of the CJA and related statues provided pursuant to approval of the Judicial Conference of the United States.  The website is secure and requires you to create a login and password in order to access the information on the website.

Western District Of Texas US District Court Website

This website offers information, forms, and worksheets regarding the CJA Panel Attorney Payment System, CJA Forms used for the appointment of and claims for counsel, experts, court reporters, and other services providers under the CJA.

CJA Panel Attorney Representatives

Each federal judicial district has a CJA panel representative. As the representative of all panel attorneys in the district, the CJA panel representative acts as the point of contact between panel members and other components of the judicial branch with respect to the CJA program. The CJA panel representative for the Western District of Texas is Cyntia Orr of San Antonio, who may be reached at 210-226-1463.

Telephone and E-Mail Consultations and Motion Preparation Assistance

Panel attorneys are encouraged to consult with the defender organization on any aspect of a CJA case. Inquiries may be directed by telephone or e-mail to individual attorneys. For contact information see our office directory. Requests for assistance with preparation of court motions are also welcome. 

Moot Courts for Appellate Arguments

The appellate section in the San Antonio office will conduct a moot court (practice argument) for any panel attorney who is preparing to argue a CJA case before the Fifth Circuit or U.S. Supreme Court.  Contact the appellate section to make arrangements for moot courts.

Defender Supreme Court Resource and Assistance Panel (DSCRAP)

DSCRAP is a panel of federal defenders assisting court-appointed counsel engaged in Supreme Court litigation: brainstorming issues, preparing and finalizing petitions and merit briefs, coordinating amicus curiae, and conducting moot courts prior to oral argument. Panel members have vast experience as counsel of record in hundreds of cases before the Court, briefing dozens of cert grants and arguing in many individual cases.

Litigation Support

A resource for Defender staff and CJA panel attorneys when facing cases with large volumes of discovery and/or electronic discovery. The page defines litigation support, provides contact information for the National Litigation Support Team, and contains links to an Initial Discovery Assessment Checklist, Recommended E-Discovery Practices for FPD/CJA Attorneys, and a Guide for CJA Panel Attorneys on Obtaining Litigation Support Resources.


Additional Information

San Antonio Division

Media Source Agreement - Karnes

Midland-Odessa and Pecos Divisions CJA Committees have been established!

Austin Division CJA Committee has been established!

Next Steps for Families

The Cardone Report

Training Information


CJA Panel Training 2021

 ZOOM WEBINARS - For viewing information on listed webinars or materials, send e-mail to

Preliminary and Detention Hearings and Pre-trial Investigation - Shane McMahon (held on Monday - August 16, 2021)

Proffers and Safety Valve, Law and Preactice Tips - Erik Hanshew (held on Tuesday - August 17, 2021)

Pre-trial Motions and DIscovery Issues, Law and Practice Tips - Dale Ogden (held on Wednesday - August 18, 2021)

Fifth Circuit Update - Kristin Kimmelman (held on Thursday - August 19, 2021)

Fifth Circuit Update

Ethics- Cynthia Orr (held on Friday - August 20, 2021)

Ethics 2021