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Juvenile Division (Multiple Locations)

Recruitment #22-005799-0011


The Maryland Office of the Public Defender (OPD) seeks a zealous and dedicated litigators to represent young people in both delinquency and criminal matters in 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 bases between October, 2022 and February 1, 2023. All selected candidates, regardless of start date, will attend OPD’s Gideon’s Promise program together in February 1, 2023.

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.



Main Purpose of Job

OPD Juvenile Defenders provide consistent client-centered representation to their clients from their first court appearance through their entire case. This vertical representation model leads to deep and lasting client relationships and continuity of representation across years and cases. Attorneys work in conjunction with social workers and core staff in a team-oriented environment. Attorneys must be able to balance a client-centered approach to representation with advocacy to address systemic inequity and the collateral consequences that lead to deeper system involvement. 


The successful candidate will:

  • Represent youth at arraignment, adjudication, disposition, and post-disposition hearings.
  • Represent clients in administrative matters related to conditions of confinement and access to treatment.
  • Work to identify and advocate for solutions to systemic issues.
  • Work collaboratively with social workers and core staff to assist clients and their families in matters related to housing, education, school discipline, mental health, and other collateral matters that contribute to deepening system involvement.
  • Investigate, develop, and litigate novel and cutting edge Constitutional arguments in order to advance and expand the rights of young people in contact with the juvenile justice system.
  • Competently and resourcefully prepare for and manage an active caseload.
  • Effectively, proactively, and compassionately communicate with clients, family members, team members, colleagues, community resources, and service providers to ensure optimal outcomes and resolve challenges in an open, constructive, and professional manner.
  • Continuously seek professional and personal development through trainings, CLEs, and trial skills courses.


  • Demonstrated commitment to zealous and comprehensive defense practice, including the ability to represent client in juvenile, criminal, and administrative hearings.
  • Knowledge, training, and experience related to adolescent development, neuroscience, education, mental health treatment, and best practices for juvenile rehabilitation.  
  • Ability to communicate effectively with people of with different backgrounds and lived experiences. Proven expertise communicating with children and adolescence preferred.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced, diverse, team-oriented environment.
  • Exceptional organizational, legal, and administrative skills necessary to handle a high caseload.
  • Criminal trial and/or experience representing juveniles preferred.
  • Active membership in good standing in the Maryland Bar or Bar of another State by start date.*




If you wish to be considered for this position please submit the State of Maryland Application below. Additionally, click here to fill out a supplemental questionnaire and please submit the following items in one email to (1) current resume, (2) cover letter, (3) list of references, (4) writing sample, and (5) transcript (if graduated from law school within the past 3 years).  In the subject line of the email please indicate “APDs: Juvenile Division.”  Incomplete applications will not be considered. 

Closing Date: August 26, 2022

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.

*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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