Closing Date: 29th November, 2023


Class Definition:
The Rhode Island Public Defender is seeking an attorney to represent indigent clients in Rhode Island state courts. Representation may include, depending upon the area of specialty, intake processing, collection of background information concerning the client and offense, interviewing clients and witnesses, case investigation, preparation for court proceedings, legal research and writing, and any other representation functions. Representation also includes appearing in state courts and conducting criminal trials on behalf of indigent clients. Applicants must maintain frequent contact and a good working relationship with clients and possess thorough knowledge of up-to-date and relevant criminal law and procedure. The assistant public defender in this role will represent clients in either the office's Adult Criminal District Court Unit, Family Court Juvenile Unit, or Family Court Parental Rights Unit.

Maintaining accurate and complete files with entries made in a timely manner, and providing such reporting as may be required. Current and thorough knowledge of corrections and community treatment programs and other resources for clients. Participating in periodic evaluations. Periodic preparation of documents supporting office programs and funding. Participating in public defender training and community programs. Intake interviews and financial eligibility determinations as required.

Illustrative Examples of Work Performed:
Supervision Required: Works under the general supervision of unit or division head, with considerable latitude for the exercise of initiative and independent judgment in the representation of clients assigned. Work is reviewed and evaluated periodically. Opportunities will be created to act as second-chair to gain further trial experience. CASELOAD: Caseloads may be limited in number and/or type, commensurate with skill and experience. Assignment of particularly demanding cases may be accompanied by special assistance and/or resources. SUPERVISION EXERCISED: With respect to representation in individual cases, plans, organizes, coordinates, directs and reviews the work of professional assistants, investigators, social workers, and administrative support staff assigned to assist. May exercise limited responsibility for assignments of cases and intake function in a particular location.

Illustrative Examples of Work Performed: Advise and represent the legal interests of assigned clients pertaining to the technical and legal aspects in the relevant legal specialty. Represent clients at a variety of court proceedings, including but not limited to hearings, conferences, oral arguments, and trials. Provide legal assistance to inmates at the Adult Correctional Institutions, Training School, any federal penitentiary, or any state prison requesting assistance from the Office of the Public Defender for the purpose of resolving pending criminal charges. Provide technical and legal assistance to any other assistant public defender as required. Prepare detailed reports and recommendations. Respond to requests for technical and/or legal advice as assigned by supervisor(s). Remain knowledgeable about federal and state law, as relevant to the legal specialty practiced. Prepare briefs for memorandum and/or argument. Prepare legal research necessary to conduct a criminal trial or hearing.

Related work as required.

Required Qualifications for Appointment:
Required Qualifications for Appointment: Knowledges, Skills and Capacities: A thorough knowledge of relevant federal, state, and local laws; a thorough knowledge of the problems inherent in the criminal justice field; the ability to act as advisor and/or counselor to clients assigned; the ability to meet and deal effectively with officials of the State, Court, or local prosecution; the ability to conduct special research projects; the ability to prepare detailed factual reports; and related capacities and abilities.

Education and Experience:
Education: Such as may have been gained through graduation from a law school of recognized standing, and EXPERIENCE: Such as may have been gained through employment as a practicing attorney or previous experience in a responsible position in a related field.

Special Requirement: A J.D. from an accredited law school; admission to the Rhode Island Bar, or eligibility for waived admission.

Supplemental Information:
To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to The Rhode Island Public Defender is an equal opportunity and diversity employer. We encourage applications from people whose backgrounds are underrepresented in the legal profession.