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ASSISTANT PUBLIC DEFENDER POSITIONS

Locations Throughout Maryland (Spring Class 2023)

Recruitment #22-005799-0010

Introduction

Our vision is for Justice, Fairness, and Dignity for All and we are committed to our core values of a culture of excellence, client-centered representation, tenacious advocacy, and remain united as a team in achieving our mission. At OPD we use our legal education and experience to fight for justice and fairness, no matter what and we refuse to remain silent in the midst of human suffering. Our unique talents, identities, educational backgrounds, and perspectives guide us in representing our clients. We stand up against prejudice, systemic racism, and inequity in all of the spaces we occupy. OPD seeks candidates that will join us in providing compassionate, competent, zealous, and client-centered representation to all of our clients. Learn more about our mission and commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

GRADE

22

Main Purpose of Job

The Maryland Office of the Public Defender (OPD) seeks dynamic, dedicated, and client-centered litigators to serve as Assistant Public Defenders in offices across Maryland. Following a lengthy hiring freeze and an unprecedented number of retirements and turnover, OPD is excited to hire attorneys to join offices across Maryland. OPD currently has opportunities for candidates at all experience levels. Offers will be made for specific jurisdictions based on the candidate’s stated geographic limitations and preferences as well as OPD’s needs. Successful candidates for these positions will begin their employment with OPD on a rolling basis between October, 2022 and February, 2023. All selected candidates, regardless of start date, will attend OPD’s Gideon’s Promise program together on February 1, 2023.


POSITION DUTIES

Assistant Public Defenders combine their demonstrated dedication to the representation of indigent clients with their strong litigation skills to provide exceptional representation. With training and support, attorneys in these positions are expected to work independently in managing an active caseload while simultaneously working in a team-oriented environment focused on a client-centered approach to advocacy.

   Ability to competently and resourcefully prepare for and manage an active caseload.

   Effectively and compassionately communicate with clients, colleagues, and service providers to ensure optimal outcomes for clients. 

   Continuously seek professional and personal development through trainings, continuing legal education, and trial skills courses.

   Ensure clients are consistently heard and respected. 

   Passionate and zealous representation of clients charged with criminal and traffic matters at every stage of the criminal process.

 

CORE COMPETENCIES AND REQUIREMENTS:

Demonstrated commitment to serving communities who have been pushed to the margins. 

Clear dedication to upending systemic racism, prejudice, and unfairness in the criminal justice system.

Compassion.

Ability to communicate effectively with people with different backgrounds and lived experiences. 

Ability to thrive in a fast-paced, diverse, team-oriented environment.

Exceptional organizational, legal, and administrative skills necessary to handle a high caseload.

    All offers will be contingent on membership in good standing with the bar in advance of the scheduled start date.[1] 

 

 

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS

ASSISTANT PUBLIC DEFENDER I
Education: A Juris Doctorate degree or equivalent degree from an accredited school of law. 
Experience: Experience as a practicing Attorney (II/III). 
Notes: 
1. Candidates shall be an Attorney and admitted to practice law in the State by the Court of Appeals of Maryland, at the time of appointment. 
2. The above requirements are set by the Office of the Public Defender in accordance with Criminal Procedure Article, Section 16-203 of the Annotated Code of Maryland. 
3. Candidates may substitute U.S. Armed Forces military service experience as a commissioned officer in general attorney classification or general attorney specialty codes in the legal and kindred group field of work on a year-for-year basis for the required experience and education. 

ASSISTANT PUBLIC DEFENDER II 
Education: A Juris Doctorate degree or equivalent degree from an accredited school of law. 
Experience: Experience as a practicing Attorney. 
Notes: 
1. Candidates shall be an Attorney and admitted to practice law in the State by the Court of Appeals of Maryland, at the time of appointment. 
2. The above requirements are set by the Office of the Public Defender in accordance with Criminal Procedure Article, Section 16-203 of the Annotated Code of Maryland. 
3. Candidates may substitute U.S. Armed Forces military service experience as a commissioned officer in general attorney classification or general attorney specialty codes in the legal and kindred group field of work on a year-for-year basis for the required experience and education. 

ASSISTANT PUBLIC DEFENDER III 
Education: A Juris Doctorate degree or equivalent degree from an accredited school of law. 
Experience: Experience as a practicing Attorney. 
Notes: 
1. Candidates shall be an Attorney and admitted to practice law in the State by the Court of Appeals of Maryland, at the time of appointment. 
2. The above requirements are set by the Office of the Public Defender in accordance with Criminal Procedure Article, Section 16-203 of the Annotated Code of Maryland. 
3. Candidates may substitute U.S. Armed Forces military service experience as a commissioned officer in general attorney classification or general attorney specialty codes in the legal and kindred group field of work on a year-for-year basis for the required experience and education.

FURTHER INSTRUCTIONS

If you wish to be considered please complete the State of Maryland online application. Additionally, click here to fill out a supplemental questionnaire and please submit the following items in one email to opd-jobs.law@maryland.gov: (1) current resume, (2) cover letter addressing the above qualifications, (3) a list of references; and (4) law school transcript (if within 3 years of graduation). In the subject line of the email please indicate “Assistant Public Defender.”  Incomplete applications will not be considered.

 

CLOSING DATE:  NOVEMBER 11, 2022

WE HIGHLY ENCOURAGE CANDIDATES TO APPLY AS SOON AS POSSIBLE

OFFERS WILL BE MADE ON A ROLLING BASIS

 

The Maryland Office of the Public Defender is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to building a culturally diverse staff and strongly encourage people historically underrepresented in the practice of law to apply.  Assistant Public Defenders are full-time employees who serve at the pleasure of the Public Defender. Criminal Procedure Art., Section 16-203(d). Assistant Public Defenders cannot engage in the private practice of law while in this position.


[1] To be eligible for these positions you must be admitted to the bar in advance of December, 2022. Accordingly most current law students are not eligible. For candidates awaiting bar results, offers will be made contingent on admission to a bar in advance of the set start date. Attorneys barred in another state must become members of the Maryland Bar within 18 months of start date. 



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