Attorney - 3rd Year

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Job location
710 Second Avenue, Suite 1000
Seattle, WA 98104
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
King County, Department of Public Defense
Street address: 
710 Second Avenue, Suite 1000
Job type: 
Legal - Defender
Position Description: 

The Department of Public Defense (DPD) is now actively recruiting 3rd year law students committed to working in public defense in King County to begin employment in late summer 2018. The successful applicant will have a passion for public defense and a demonstrated commitment to helping those who are less fortunate. He or she will also have a demonstrated ability to receive feedback and integrate that feedback into his or her practice. The scope of representation expected by an attorney is determined by the nature of the case assignment and in accordance with the Rules of Professional Conduct. Caseload standards established by the State Supreme Court and that foster excellence in legal representation are observed in accordance with Washington State Bar Association guidelines. Attorneys in the Department of Public Defense are expected to complete all required trainings and to actively advance their level of practice by seeking additional learning opportunities.

DPD provides legal representation to indigent clients in several practice areas, including felonies, misdemeanors, juvenile offenders, dependencies, involuntary commitment, civil commitment of sexually violent predators, and contempt of court. The department also works to address racial disproportionality in the criminal justice system, the collateral consequences of justice involvement, and other structural and/or systemic issues that undermine the rights of the criminally accused. It employs not only attorneys, but also skilled investigators, mitigation specialists, paralegals, and other support staff. Expert services are regularly funded, in keeping with state court rules. King County public defense has also been a leader in the development of therapeutic courts, providing diversion and support to clients who have entered the criminal justice system due to drug involvement, mental illness, or other issues.

•Provide legal representation and advocacy to indigent clients.
•Handle all aspects of representation, from arraignment through sentencing and post-trial as necessary.
•Research, write and argue pretrial motions.
•Conduct plea negotiation and mitigation.
•Conduct jury or bench trials.
•Locate, work with and prepare experts in various fields.
•Work with clients struggling with mental illness, drug addiction, lack of English proficiency, or other issues.
•Work with youth and children.
•Work closely with and in some instance lead a team of investigators, mitigation specialists and paralegals.
•Other duties as assigned


EXPERIENCE, QUALIFICATIONS, KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS: •JD from an accredited law school in 2018
•Demonstrated commitment to advocacy for disadvantaged individuals and/or issues of economic, social and racial justice
•Excellent demonstrated analytical, research, writing, and oral advocacy skills
•Ability to manage a caseload in a fast-paced environment
•Sitting for the Washington State Bar Examination in July 2018
•Being qualified to practice in the State of Washington as a Rule 9 until receiving successful July 2018 bar results and are sworn in
•A valid Washington State driver's license or the ability to travel throughout King County in a timely manner
ALSO DESIRED: •Proficiency in languages other than English, particularly Spanish.
•Clinical training in public defense.
•Criminal defense experience.
Please note: An offer of employment will be contingent on the ability to successfully pass a Washington State Patrol Background Check.

To apply: 

Who May Apply: This recruitment is open to 3rd year law student candidates and may be used to fill current and/or future full-time and part-time career service and term-limited temporary positions in any of the Department's four divisions and/or office locations in King County. Applications with be screened on a weekly basis beginning August 7, 2017. The most competitive candidates may be invited to participate in interviews beginning mid September 2017.

Work Schedule: The normal work schedule is Monday through Friday, with some night and weekend work. This position meets the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act and is not eligible for overtime.

Where to Apply: Interested individuals should submit an online King County application, cover letter, resume, and short writing sample. You can find the online application at:

Electronic submission is preferred. For inquiries, please feel free to contact Irma Van Buskirk at [email protected] or 206-263-9002.

King County is proud to be an Equal Employment Opportunity/ Affirmative Action employer and we encourage people of color, women, veterans and people with disabilities to apply.

Equal Opportunity Employer
Salary range: 
Submission deadline: 
Friday, September 8, 2017