Information for Experts and Other Service Providers
Experts and service providers will not be paid in excess of the authorized amount. If it appears that the funds authorized will not be sufficient, you should immediately contact the attorney who obtained the initial funding order to obtain additional authorization. The court will not be liable for payment for funds that have not been pre-authorized.
The following information is provided by the court to insure prompt payment for your services.
Submission of Vouchers
- All voucher submissions for fees and expenses of investigators, experts, and other service providers are made on a CJA Form 21, "Authorization and Voucher For Expert and Other Services" or in capital cases on a form CJA Form 31, “Death Penalty Proceedings: Ex Parte Request for Authorization and Voucher for Expert and Other Services.” Please make sure all information is completed for the boxes noted on the attached sample vouchers in bold numbers.
- You must sign the CJA 21 or CJA 31 at Box 17 and the attorney who requested the services must sign at Box 18.
- You must submit a copy of the approved funding order authorizing your services with the voucher.
- You must submit an invoice with the CJA 21 or CJA 31 detailing the time spent in 1/10 hour segments. Each 1/10 hour is 6 minutes. Investigators/paralegals must separate time claimed into discrete tasks e.g. reading documents, interviewing witnesses, etc.
- Interpreters must bill for actual time expended. In accordance with special rules applicable to interpreters. The CJA technicians will round-off to the nearest hour.
- Vouchers should be submitted at the conclusion of the services, unless interim payments are requested and approved by the trial judge and the Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals for the
Please review the following guidelines to be reimbursed for out-of-pocket expenses reasonably incurred in the rendering of services on behalf of the defendant/petitioner.
- Proof of payment must be submitted for any individual expense over $50.00, by an original paid receipt, copy of the canceled check, or credit card receipt.
- For outside photocopying, a copy of the invoice/receipt must be submitted, regardless of amount.
- Case-related travel by a privately owned automobile should be claimed at the rate current authorized for federal judiciary employees who use an automobile for the conduct of official business. Reimbursable expenses include mileage plus parking fees, ferry fares and bridge, road and tunnel tolls. Refer to the mileage chart for any adjustments in mileage rates. Transportation other than by a privately owned automobile should be claimed on an actual expense basis.
- Air travel in "first class" is prohibited.
- If the reimbursement for expenses relating to a single trip will total an amount in excess of $500, prior approval from the court must be requested. In addition, all overnight travel and all travel by airplane must have advance approval by the CJA Supervising Attorney. Please use the travel request form for the advance approval. For specific details concerning per diem rates or high cost areas, consult the Clerk’s Office, CJA Unit. When submitting a voucher with trip expenses, please use the Travel Expense Worksheet and organize the expenses and receipts by date incurred.
- With respect to necessary travel outside the district, travel expenses, such as airfare, mileage, parking fees, meals and lodging, should be claimed on an actual cost basis. Reimbursement is limited to 150% of the government per diem rates for domestic travel and 100% for foreign travel. Meals and lodging are included in per diem rates; other expenses, such as taxi fares, rental car charges are not included in the per diem rate and may be claimed separately if receipts are provided. Please check the court’s website for current per diem rates.
- Meals are reimbursable only when overnight travel is authorized or travel exceeds 10 hours. You must provide detailed restaurant bills and not credit card slips. Alcoholic beverages, in-room movies, and other non-essential items cannot be reimbursed.
- You are allowed and encouraged to take advantage of government rates for travel. A special account has been established with National Travel to facilitate direct billing to the government for the authorized airfare. National Travel may be contacted at 1-866-450-0401 to obtain travel quotes.
- Telephone toll calls, fax charges (charges as shown on phone bill), photocopying, and photographs are considered reimbursable expenses if reasonably incurred. However, general office overhead, such as rent, secretarial help, time spent preparing CJA vouchers, and telephone service, is not a reimbursable expense, nor are items of a personal nature.
For further questions or guidance, please contact the CJA Unit of the Clerk’s Office.